Due to a county redistricting proposal under consideration, Bustichi may have to wait until Sept. 20 to determine if his home on Sunset Terrace, off of Navarra Drive, will remain in the 5th District — which now encompasses all of Scotts Valley and the San Lorenzo Valley — or will become part of the First District, which would join a fraction of Scotts Valley with Live Oak.
Bustichi, a lifelong Scotts Valley resident and owner of BCI Builders, has served two terms on the Scotts Valley City Council and is serving his second yearlong stint as mayor.
He said he has been considering a run for four years and would hope to give a stronger voice to his neighbors in the 5th District.
“I’ve always felt, in the 5th District, as if the city did not have representation in the 5th District,” he said. “Not only do you represent the unincorporated areas, but you also represent the cities and the people in them.”
“The Scotts Valley community is something that’s always been close to my heart,” added Bustichi, who describes himself politically as “fiscally conservative and more socially liberal.”
As far the possibility of representing the less-cosmopolitan San Lorenzo Valley, Bustichi said he thinks he would prove an effective representative for the communities along Highway 9, as well, with a goal of encouraging business.
“I think there’s a common interest, and I think I do have an understanding of the inner workings of the San Lorenzo Valley and some of the other issues that need to be addressed,” he said. “Economically, the community is not going to survive long term without economic growth.”
Bustichi said that if he runs for supervisor, it will not matter which district he is in, saying the county is broken and he can fix it.
Civic activity is nothing new to Bustichi, who has also served with the Scotts Valley Fire Protection District, the Santa Cruz Metro board of directors and the Santa Cruz Regional Transportation Commission, or to his family.
“My father was always involved with public service,” he said.
Harvey Bustichi was a Scotts Valley planning commissioner in the 1970s.
For now, Dene Bustichi is lobbying the Board of Supervisors to preserve the 5th District’s borders, due to the geographic separation of the northern end of Santa Cruz County from the rest of the county.
“The thing that’s universal with the north county is that you have these different valleys,” Bustichi said. “While we’re all different and unique, there are things we have common interest in. That’s why the 5th District should be kept whole.”