Wed. Jun 12th, 2024

It’s bad enough that Santa Ana City Council Ward 5 candidate Roman Reyna is supporting every single tax increase measure on the November ballot.  But yesterday he actually was the only City Council candidate to blow off and skip the Candidates Forum hosted by the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce, at the Delhi Center.  And to make matters worse, I am told that he was a no show because he feels he has the election in the bag and he doesn’t need to “waste his time” showing up to meet business owners and voters.

Wow.  This from a guy who has never held a job in the private sector, as far as I can tell.  His last job was at the Santa Ana YMCA and before that he worked at the Santa Ana Boys and Girls Club.  Both are non-profits.  

To be fair, Reyna apparently no longer works for the YMCA.  According to Linkedin, he is now an insurance agent for New York Life.  Good for him!  But according to his Facebook page he now works for the City of Santa Ana.  That is a bit presumptuous isn’t it?

So where does he work?  Well, if you click on the “About Me” page on his campaign website what you get is an error.  There is no info loaded there.

But when you click on Reyna’s “Issues” guess what?  He tells you that he is for transparency but he doesn’t tell you much else.  His issues apparently are “Coming Soon.”  The election is about a month from now.  So when will Reyna tell us about his life and his issues?

Luckily we can find his bio elsewhere.  Click here to see what he had to say about himself when he first ran for the Santa Ana City Council, in 2004.  Apparently he used to work for the Santa Ana Parks and Recreation Department.  But that was years ago, before he worked for the Santa Ana Boys and Girls Club.

So again, this guy has never apparently worked for a private company – until perhaps now if indeed he is working for New York Life.  He has however set up volleyball games for the City of Santa Ana’s Parks and Rec Department, the Santa Ana Boys and Girls Club and the Santa Ana YMCA.

Is it any surprise then that Reyna blew off approximately forty business owners last night at the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce Candidates Forum?

One issue that Reyna touted in 2004 was his involvement with Santa Ana’s Neighborhood Associations.  Santa Ana is the only city in Orange County that spends hundreds of thousands of dollars subsidizing Neighborhood Associations.  But very few of our residents are actually involved in these organizations.  I would guess that perhaps half a percentage of our population goes to or has gone to Neighborhood Association meetings.  But our taxes are paying for their operation!  And we know that Reyna is a big fan of raising our taxes.

So what are we to make of this fellow?  He supports the new Santa Ana “Sunshine Ordinance” that labor leaders say will kill jobs – and it will, by stopping development.  Part of that new law is “Transparency” but Reyna is not being transparent about who he is or what he wants to do to our city.

You have to wonder if he has what it takes to lead in our city.  According to his SAUSD School Board bio “He is working towards a bachelor’s degree in Youth Development from Springfield College in Los Angeles, Calif.”  Now I understand getting your degrees as an adult – I did the same.  But his opponent already has her degree – and unlike Reyna she has lived outside of Santa Ana, indeed she has traveled the world.

I am talking about Reyna’s opponent, businesswoman Karina Onofre.  She has a complete campaign website that includes her bio and the issues she is running on.  She is much younger than Reyna but she finished her college degree, at a prestigious  national liberal arts college.  She has worked in private business since she graduated, in property management.  She already knows far more than Reyna does about business – and unlike Reyna she has been at every single Santa Ana Council candidates forum.  She is not taking us for granted.  Reyna is – and he has not even been elected yet.

What we do know about Reyna is that he is leaving the SAUSD School Board after only one term.  He says our young people are important to him but he is abandoning him, so he can climb the political ladder.

Reyna thinks he has victory in the bag.  Let’s make sure he is wrong by voting for Onofre, not Reyna, on Nov. 6.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

40 thoughts on “No sunshine for Reyna as he blows off Santa Ana business owners”

    This guy is as phony as thy come. I am frightened that all it takes anymore is to have a bad smile and a BIG D$%K, like David, Carlos and this loser.

    This i the last thing Santa Ana needs, David Benavide’s a cheating liar bible thumper, Carlos Bustamonte, David’s wingman, an accussedfelon and now tis gy with a High School Diploma.

    Richarsonloved him on the AUSD board because he pimped him out, now that’s what the “three amigo’s will do” with staff.

  2. I know that Roman’s deceased brother was an F Troop gang member and his sister had the nickname Smiley when she attended Santa Ana High School.

    I hear he also has ties to F Troop gang members. Maybe that’s why he and Al Amezcua get along so well.

  3. Maybe he still has ties to F-troop because he is that loyal?
    Has Onofre ever declared why she recently switched from Dem to Republican? Am I mistaken? That’s what she did didn’t she?
    Admin has been known to do a few political about faces himself.

    1. I am pretty much done with the red and blue parties Mateo. Tonight’s presidential debate offered even more reasons to stay independent.

      As for Onofre, she did switch parties but she actually worked on Obama’s first campaign. What this tells me is that she is open minded. I like that she differs from Reyna on important issues like taxes.

      The great danger in voting for Reyna is what he and the rest of the lame Benavides majority might do. We are glimpsing this agenda already – higher taxes, less development, less jobs, less opportunities and most likely a lot more waste.

      Vote Onofre on Nov. 6.

  4. Can you name me any other person in America that would work on an Obama campaign 4 years ago. (probably with Loretta Sanchez) and then switch over to become a Republican? How did Bustamante convince her to do that? I mean, I know that the dude is devilishly sexy and powerful, but seriously now.
    And he supposedly did it after he got into trouble with the law and already had a tarnished political reputation? Seriously Now!
    What am I missing from this picture?

    1. To be honest I think the argument was simple. Reyna clearly was going to be the Democrat’s candidate. So Onofre figured to at least garner a third of the voters by switching parties and perhaps bank on decline to state and independent voters as well as conservative Democrats who are sick of the higher taxes that Reyna is advocating.

      Another important factor – once Alvarez terms out we will have only one female Council Member. Are you seriously OK with that?

  5. Glad that you mentioned Alvarez.
    Are you sure that the switch did not have more to do with Alvarez, than Reyna?

    1. Not sure what it would have to do with Alvarez. But I do know that we need more women on our Council.

      Why are you hacking for the Benavides cabal? They tried to sell your building to his church. I believe he stood to make a real estate commission on that deal. You are OK with that? Really?

  6. So according to you, Editor, it is wrong for a person to dedicate your life to working in the non-profit world and more specifically “hosting volley games” where you are working directly in the front lines with the kids making a big difference like many people have made a big difference in my life through after school programs than wearing a suit to work every day saying “these kids are getting bad grades because taxes are too high, it can’t be the fact that cheapskates like Art don’t want to pay taxes for them to have materials to succeed….” Put down your computer and walk (yes walk, do you still remember how to do that?) to these schools or non-profits like the Boys and Girls Club and the YMCA and see how people who have worked for little pay bring a sense of happiness and importance to the kids of Santa Ana with the little they are given.

    Its easy to look at everyone else and say “look that person is bad and we shouldn’t vote for him” when you yourself have never had any success in any campaign whatsoever. I want to see Pedroza 2014 for something just to laugh at it on my way to menial job. Onofre has a pretty face and book smarts, but that is not enough to win an election. That description somewhat sounds like you, pretty face and book smart, and how far has that gotten you?

    1. You do realize that my wife and I are actively involved with Litte League and the Cub Scouts? Unlike Reyna we do that as volunteers. He always got paid for his non profit work.

      It is easy for Reyna to vote to increase taxes and to ignore business owners when the guy has no clue what it is to work for private businesses. Is this what we need on our Council, which already has far too many government workers on it?

      Onofre is much younger than Reyna but is already far more accomplished and much more experienced in business. She is exactly the sort of leader we need on our Council.

      As for Reyna, he loves the kids so much that he is walking away from the School Board after only one term. Quitter.

      1. Volunteering for your kids is called parenting. And when someone like Reyna has dedicated his life’s work to not end up on the path his brother walked, which you all seem to be familiar with, he should be compensated for his work in one way or another.

        It is also easy for you to criticize someone else’s career as a politician when you have never been an elected official.

        Onofre read a book and is ready to run for office? After reading this blog I’ll run for election in 2014. Maybe I’ll even ask Karina to let me borrow her book.

        1. You are a pretty angry fellow. Perhaps Reyna can share some medical marijuana with you to calm you down.

          Don’t make Reyna out to be a saint because he worked for non profits. He was paid. He was no volunteer. It is how he made a living. For a very long time.

          I reserve the right to criticize politicians and candidates here and on my OC Politics blog. It is rather hypocritical for you to call me out for that and then you turn around and attack Onofre.

          Go ahead and run in 2014. Then I will be writing about you, not Reyna.

          1. Haha, angry is the word you throw out when your can begin to refute the facts. Look up Santa Ana Youth and Government and who is running it. Roman Reyna. Who is paying him to do it? No one. Go out and get all the information.

          2. How convenient for Reyna – pretending to be a volunteer so he can brainwash our youth and put them to work on his campaign. Very clever.

  7. Most of the people in my neighborhood with Reyna signs are still undocumented. Without papers. They are great families but they can’t vote yet. Roman means well but really has no idea how to run a campaign. It will be close but Karina will win and I do believe we need more women on the City Council.

  8. I would encourage all women who read New Santa Ana to vote for a woman this year in as many races as possible. We must give women a voice.

  9. I do not promote the Benavides Cabal admin.
    All though I am very happy about his support of the Sunshine Ordinance.

    I am going to be nicer to Ms. Onofre for awhile.
    (Hello Ms. Onofre!)
    and stop mapping her political puppet strings.
    I am so glad to see that she endorses the United Artists of Santa Ana on her wordpress/facebook.
    She has remarkable taste in cultural trends.

    I am sure that the United Artists would enjoy meeting with her.

  10. Sure we’d like to give women a voice but it should also depend on who we give the voice to, just because she’s a woman doesn’t mean we all should vote for her.

    1. You are correct. But Reyna doesn’t offer much to vote for either. We know he is for higher taxes. We know he talks about sunshine and transparency then doesn’t show up to candidates forums. And we know he has no background in business which is quite possibly the final straw…

  11. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Roman is not very different than his brother Sammy or his sister Smiley. Is she still now smoking medical marijuana?

  12. Roman’s sister is named “Smiley”?
    What kind of a name is that for a woman?
    My favorite name still;
    “Pumpkin Ass at Midnight”
    Huh Admin?
    Sorry man, that medical marijuana is busting my chops.

  13. There is no reason former Santa Ana Gang members or those who have siblings who are gang members can’t run for City Council. Some of our best current Councilmembers are former Gang members.

  14. Karina is a good choice for Santa Ana City Council. Both Karina and Cecilia “Ceci” Iglesias will work to empower our Youth to be involved. Ceci served 2 years on the Board of Directors for the Santa Ana Youth Council(WIB) and mentored youth through the Project Together mentoring Program. Vote Karina Onofre for City Council and Cecilia “Ceci” Iglesias for School Board. They are both Latinas who grew up in Santa Ana, Graduated from Santa Ana Public Schools and have the passion to make Santa Ana a better place to live, go to school and work.

  15. Usually, gangs have gained the most control in poorer, urban communities and the Third World in response to unemployment and other services.[62] Social disorganization, the disintegration of societal institutions such as family, school, and the public safety net enable groups of peers to form gangs.[63] According to surveys conducted internationally by the World Bank for their World Development Report 2011, by far the most common reason people suggest as a motive for joining gangs is unemployment.[64]
    Ethnic solidarity is a common factor in gangs. Black and Hispanic gangs formed during the 1960s in the USA often adapted nationalist rhetoric.[65] Both majority and minority races in society have established gangs in the name of identity: the Igbo gang Bakassi Boys in Nigeria defend the majority Igbo group violently and through terror, and in the United States, whites who feel threatened by minority rights have formed their own groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan. Responding to an increasing black and Hispanic migration, a white gang called Gaylords formed in Chicago.[66]

    It is why Reyna elected to be a council candidate. Economic opportunity is the biggest tool to control/eradicate gangs and other social symptoms associated with the above factors researchers listed.

    The new Pulido independent majority council and candidates like Reyna understand this better than the past 18 year Pulido controlled council majority council has.

  16. Brother Mateo said:
    “Maybe he(Roman)still has ties to F-troop because he is that loyal?”

    Don’t you think that F-Troop is over represented on the City Council?
    What about the The Lopers, Myrtle Street, 18th Street, and other much smaller Santa Ana gangs that don’t have any political representation at all? What is the fairness in that I ask?

  17. Sr. Teonanácatl Ololiuqui says:
    October 4, 2012 at 10:35 am
    Brother Mateo said:
    “Maybe he(Roman)still has ties to F-troop because he is that loyal?”

    Don’t you think that F-Troop is over represented on the City Council?
    What about the The Lopers, Myrtle Street, 18th Street, and other much smaller Santa Ana gangs that don’t have any political representation at all? What is the fairness in that I ask?


    What is your intended message here? Besides the content being completely false.

    1. Dr. Lomeli,

      I suppose living in a MILLION DOLLAR villa in Orange Park Acres, youfind it hard to understand the gang issues facing the city, other than the silly position papers you read and cite.

      But, this week at the debates, Randy Barth along with Tom Linnert talked about how along with Fr. Smith of St. Joseph Church and a few others shattered gang life around the civic center (and Minter) area for a time.

      This was possible because Mayor Pulido, quietly offered support. He didn’t put in on a billboard, didn’t use it as fodder. Yet, that’s EXACTLY what David does.

      Ironic, that Emily Benavides chose Orange to move to when she left her husband because of his repeated infidelity. It’s safer than the gang infested street he lives on.

      Nice job he has been doing trying to ERASE her address from public records. But, I sent it to the LA TIMES reporter today, along with details of the lease, NOW THATS INTERESTING!

  18. Abolita,

    What in the world is your point here?

    You seem to be advocating a standard resume to qualify for office. PURSUE IT.


  19. Roman’s sister Denise was given the name “Smiley” because of her big smile. Marijuana induced smile that is. As any F Trooper from El Salvador park.

    With over 180 gangs in Santa Ana, I agree with Sr. Teonanácatl Ololiuqui that there isn’t enough gang representation on the Santa Ana City Council.

    My, my, my. What has become of Santa Ana?

  20. Gang problem is a by- product of the last 18 year Pulido leadership providing little to no economic opportunity in the city majority Hispanic community.

  21. Of course gangs are result of Pulido…because everyone knows he has Super Hero powers that enable him to make grown men and women vote the way he wants. He turns them all into powerless voting Zombies with just one look. So he made them vote to keep raising the pay of Police officers and go soft on crime.

  22. It seems to me that you are trying out the same strategy as the republicans back in ’08 when they ridiculed Obama for being a “community organizer.” Now I’m not comparing Reyna to Obama, but when did it become a liability to focus one’s life in pursuit of helping others rather than simply seeking one’s own financial security in the private sector. I’d think that it would speak volumes about a person’s integrity and selflessness but that’s just my opinion. Perhaps there’s more sinister reasons to dedicate your life to community non-profit organizations like the YMCA and the Boys and Girls Club. As far as the strategy of discrediting community organizing, I don’t think it worked out too well for the republicans four years ago.

    1. Or was it perhaps that Reyna just wanted to have fun and now that he is older he wants to cash in? Let’s face it, the sort of work he did for so long is usually done by high school and college kids. Reyna kept at it even as he grew older, like Will Ferrell in that movie where he joins a frat as a 40 year old. It is just weird.

      And all this time Reyna has also avoided getting married. So to recap the rest of us have been busy working in real jobs, getting married and raising kids. But Reyna, a Latino Peter Pan, has been setting up volleyball games throughout his adult years.

      Now he wants to get elected to the Council but he can’t even bother to show up to the candidates forums. Everything about this guy says “watch out!”

  23. Ernesto (AKA Roman),

    Your face is well known in the bookstores along GG BLVD.

    You thought you were trickey staying out of the usual GY haunnts of SA. That’s cool We get it.

    But to pretend NOW that you are something other than a Bookstore bi&^H is laughable.

    Own up brother. You hittin’ for the other team.

  24. “Editor” just because Reyna does not have a diploma does not mean he is not experienced. The only reason why we “value” that stupid piece of paper is because society has implanted that we NEED a diploma! America’s most wealthiest people did not graduate from higher ed.Onofred’s diploma has the same value as my promotion paper from Kindergarten.

  25. Is it just me, or does Roman Reyna have support from practically all youth and their parents? Who supports Onofred?

    1. Reyna lost in 2004 when another lady, Claudia Alvarez, beat him. And he barely won his school board seat four years ago.

      There are thousands of voters in our city. I bet most have no clue who Reyna is. This race is wide open.

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