I’ve lived all over the state of California. I was born in Fort Ord and by the time I was in the first grade, my family had lived in Eureka, Cathedral City, Pacific Beach and Escondido. After graduating from high school in Escondido, I moved to Los Angeles to go to UCLA. As an adult, I’ve lived in Oroville, Roseville, Rocklin, Sepulveda, Camarillo, Canoga Park, Encino, Escondido, Murrieta, Highland and now Beaumont.
We’ve lived in Beaumont for five years and we plan to be here a long time. We moved to Beaumont because we liked the community, we were impressed with the schools and we needed a larger home we could afford. The 2000 Census report showed Beaumont with a population of 11, 384 and in 2010 the Census reported 36,877 people living in our community. This means at least 70% of Beaumontians (or Beaumontites not sure which is correct) have lived here less than 10 years. Most of us have moved here because we saw Beaumont as a great place to raise a family.
I lived in Escondido from 1967 to 1979 when Escondido experienced growth similar to what Beaumont has over the last 10 years. During the five years I lived in Murrieta, I watched its population double in size, from 20,000 to 40,000, now I believe it is over 100,000. I think Beaumont is better prepared than either Escondido or Murrieta were. This is because of the efforts of the early Beaumontians. I am appreciative of their planning and foresight that has contributed to the quality of our community.
I believe our transplanted families have as much right to an opinion about what happens in Beaumont as the families that have been here “forever”. Everyone, even those families who have lived here a hundred years, came from somewhere else. Often I hear people justifying their comments on the Patch by telling us how long they have lived here and how if you don’t agree with them you must be new to the area. At least 70% of us have been here less than 10 years.
Most of us newcomers want to preserve as much of “old” Beaumont as we can. But we also appreciate the development that enables us to stay local and limit the number of times we have to drive to Redlands or Moreno Valley. I’m sure many who commute to live here would trade their long commute for more time with their families. We commute and sacrifice some family time because we want a better life for our kids.
Old timers, I understand you are proud of your lifelong commitment to Beaumont and we all appreciate what you and your families have built. We are all in this together and we all pretty much want the same thing or we would be living somewhere else. The fact that I no longer live in the community I grew up in, doesn’t make my family any less important than yours. Please keep this in mind as we all work together to provide a safe and secure community for our kids.