It was déjà vu all over again at the Santa Clarita City Council meeting Tuesday night with incumbents Marsha McLean, Laurene Weste and Frank Ferry being sworn in to another term on the dais.
City Clerk Sarah Gorman certified the April 13 election, where Ferry earned the third seat with only 32 votes more than challenger David Gauny, and the three took their oaths of office to a round of kudos from the community.
“32 votes and 32 precincts,” Ferry commented. “That’s one vote per precinct. As a government teacher, I can tell my students that each vote matters.”
After a brief adjournment for cake, the council reconvened and addressed a short consent calendar. Just prior to the calendar, Mayor Laurene Weste spoke about four local citizens who had recently died, intending to adjourn the meeting in their honor, including Trey Daniel Allen, a young man who died of a heroin overdose. Weste said she talked with his parents, who asked her to share their story in the hopes that other parents might save their children. She talked about drug prevention programs and counseling available, and shared the Parents Tool Kit produced by the City with resources for troubled teens.
A short while later, during public participation, Trey’s mother Krissy McAfee came to the podium, catching the council by surprise with a graphic description of finding her son dead in the driveway after he’d been dropped off by an alleged drug dealer.
“I feel we’ve lost our war on drugs and our children are our casualties,” she said. “Just Say No To Drugs and the Red Ribbons don’t work anymore. As residents of Santa Clarita, we have to make a difference, if not for ourselves then for our children and the children to come” she continued. “In the end it’s not just about trying to get rid of the heroin in our community but educating our community about prevention and helping those who are addicted to become clean and sober again.”
McAfee said that she and her husband were willing to talk at schools and share their story to illustrate not just what drug abuse does to the addict but also how it affected their loved ones.
She also said that she and her husband had given information to the sheriff’s department and been met with indifference, something the Council asked Captain Paul Becker, who has recently assumed command of the Santa Clarita station, to immediately investigate.
KHTS will feature expanded coverage of this story on Wednesday.