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City of Knoxville Mayor

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Indya Kincannon Candidate

Biographical Information

Campaign Phone (865) 226-9067

All cities want to attract new businesses that will provide its residents with well paying jobs. What qualities do you think a city should have to attract these kinds of businesses?

To attract new high quality jobs to Knoxville we must have a well-educated work-force and a high quality of life. A well-educated work-force means schools that prepare students for jobs in every sector, whether medicine, teaching, or plumbing. As Mayor I will connect people to post high school apprenticeship opportunities and elevate career paths in trades such as electricians, HVAC repair and welding. These are high-skilled, well-paid jobs that cannot be bought on-line or shipped overseas. During my 10 years on the School Board we strengthened our magnet and Project GRAD Schools and started the L&N STEM Academy, Career Magnet Academy, and the International Baccalaureate program. I was an early and ardent supporter of Community Schools, which helps schools address social and health issues, so teachers can concentrate on academics. A high quality of life means a city that values diversity and inclusiveness, a city where every person can reach his or her full potential.

What is the best use of the former St. Mary’s Hospital campus?

Since Tennova chose to shut down this hospital my priority would be to make sure the property is converted to a positive re-use as soon as possible so we avoid blight. I support Mayor Rogero’s plan to use part of the property for a new KPD headquarters, with a small area for KFD and a newly constructed space for our city courts. Our first responders’ current facilities are woefully out-dated, and the St. Mary’s site fits their needs as far as space, parking, central location and security. For the remaining office tower and historic hospital building I would discuss ideas with the community, issue an RFP guided by that input and and see what proposals surface. A nursing school in the tower would connect well to Fulton’s school of Health Sciences. There’s a pressing need for affordable housing, especially for seniors and people with disabilities. Given the location so close to downtown II could envision a mixed use space for residential, office and retail.

What do you think are the best ways for the city to generate increased revenue?

The best ways to generate increased revenue are redeveloping blighted and under-utilized properties, and creating a city that attracts new businesses and encourages existing businesses to expand. This requires a city that unleashes the entrepreneurial spirit of our people, a city that is run efficiently and transparently, a city that supports the arts, a city that is sustainable and resilient, in economic and human terms. To catalyze redevelopment efforts we will make sure our infrastructure investments are aligned towards the greatest need, so underserved areas start to attract more private investment. Streetscapes and facade improvement initiatives are part of this approach, along with making sure current and prospective developers know about the tax advantages available via federal Opportunity Zones.

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Eddie Mannis Business Owner

Biographical Information

Campaign Phone (865) 293-0828

All cities want to attract new businesses that will provide its residents with well paying jobs. What qualities do you think a city should have to attract these kinds of businesses?

Quality of life is important to attracting new companies to Knoxville. From my perspective, we have a great quality of life here but we need to do a better job on promoting. We must demonstrate that we are an open, welcoming and inclusive city. We have a ways to go but our administration must never lose sight of this goal. We also must work on making Knoxville a city that is easier to do business with. Our practices in the past of not represented this to be true. We must also work toward keeping some of the bright minds from UT and the Anderson School of Entrepreneurship and encourage and put incentives in place to keep them in Knoxville to nurture their ideas, grow their products and start their companies here. We must also work to retain more of the companies that we here by asking the question.....what can we do better? As Mayor, I will work with our partners to actively recruit new companies and listen to the concerns of our existing companies on ways we can improve.

What is the best use of the former St. Mary’s Hospital campus?

The Tennova site is one of the last amazing sites in our city. I would work with the community to make sure that we find the best use for the site so that it could continue to be an asset. My goal would be for it not to be consumed by a central large police headquarters. I would prefer that we put precincts locations within our communities and leave the Tennova site for a smaller administrative building. The admin building could also be located on many other sites as well. This site could be developed as a mixed use development that could include office space, possibly workforce or market rate housing. I am also a huge advocate for working with LMU and possibly put their school of Dentistry and/or nursing on this site. It could also have housing for law students. There are many opportunities but most importantly working with the community every step of the way will be important.

What do you think are the best ways for the city to generate increased revenue?

We must work on increasing tourism within our city. The former commissioner of tourism and I had a conversation several months ago. The State estimates that over 60% of the 12 million visitors to Sevier County go up and down 40, right through Knoxville. When asked what % stopped in Knoxville, he said it was VERY low. We need a mechanism to attract these tourists to stop in Knoxville. In my opinioin, we need something that will do for Knoxville what the Aquarium has done for Chattanooga.