2020 Madison County Commissioner District 6
2020 Madison County Commissioner District 6
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Would you want Home Rule for the County Commission? If so, what would you do to work to achieve this? If not, why not?
What ideas or plans do you have to increase and/or sustain economic growth and development in your district?
Do you feel that it is important for all citizens to have a voice in their local government? How will you work to engage citizens?
What skills, expertise and talents do you feel will most inform your decision making during your term in office?
What ideas or plans do you have to improve or maintain a high quality of life in your district e.g. recreational and entertainment spaces, public roads and services, etc.?
As our community grows, I believe there is value to having Home Rule. It will give the county control locally to craft ordinances and make decisions based solely on local needs. Alabama is one of a few states that does not have provisions for home rule charters, meaning one-third of the 700 amendments made to the state constitution apply only to one municipality. It can be confusing, and even laughable to voters in say, Madison County, to vote on issues such as an ad valorem tax in Mobile County.
As a commissioner, I would certainly support work done to obtain Home Rule as this effort has been in progress for decades. The commission could help identify a champion for this issue, develop a strategic plan, and get it to Montgomery and before the voters. The champion does not necessarily have to be a public servant, but he/she would be someone who understands the benefits of having Home Rule and have the commitment and time to dedicate to achieving this for our community.
Visiting with entrepreneurs at meetings held by the North Alabama African American Chamber of Commerce is inspiring. It is a network of businesses from black-owned bookstores to fashion boutiques. However, there is a disconnect between these visionaries and the many resources in Madison County already in place to assist them. I want to be a conduit between the start-ups and the resources. These business owners need mentors, strategic support/business coaching, marketing workshops, workspace, and low-interest loans. Much of what is needed is already being offered through programs like The Catalyst Center for Business and Entrepreneurship, and the Small Business Development Center. Let’s create a welcoming environment with a message that resonates with all stakeholders to fill the service gap. The district has homegrown human capital. The cultivation of our entrepreneurs will increase economic development in the district.
I absolutely feel that it is essential for all citizens to have a voice in their local government, and this means we must welcome women and people from marginalized groups to the table. There are ideas and energy that is not being tapped into due to lack of representation. I will work to engage citizens by rolling out the welcome mats. I feel all county boards should have diversity and inclusion to foster citizen buy-in. By encouraging all citizens to have a voice in their local government, we reap the benefit of their talents and the impact of their presence.
I am an effective communicator who can tackle jobs with enthusiasm while keeping results in mind. I plan and strategize. I then research and prepare. Next, I execute and then measure the outcomes. I am about taking action. I have a democratic leadership style that lets my team/staff/stakeholders be involved in making decisions. I am a seasoned development professional with whom people enjoy working with because I listen to differing viewpoints and work collaboratively to develop solutions that allow people to feel their opinions are heard and valued. I will take all of these skills into office and put them to work for the people.
High-quality life in District 6 begins with helping our visionaries and entrepreneurs get from concept into brick and mortar buildings. This will showcase the culture and heritage of the district, use buildings that are currently empty, and give the residents the privilege of shopping in their district. I also plan to invest in enrichment programs and extracurricular activities for our children. District 6 has a wonderful center that caters to seniors. I think it is important to market the center so that more people will know about its offerings and find funds to expand services and enrichment programs for our seniors.
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