How many years have you been a resident of Ann Arbor?
Ann Arbor Public Schools and University of Michigan. Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), CMFC, and CRPC.
As a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Director of a national online Clearinghouse for classroom teachers, and a consultant for many years with TIAA, my education and experience will enable me to explain financial matters, listen to people’s concerns, and work to protect and represent their interests on City Council. I will work to provide clarity on the challenges facing our city and the consequences of our choices. As a previous treasurer and co-chair in the Ann Arbor Democratic Party, and treasurer for political candidates like Yousef Rabhi, I will continue to uphold accuracy, accountability and transparency.
I will bring a balanced, positive voice to City Council decision-making, where we need to think long-term and continue to embrace change, but not rush to approve new structures that are not harmonious with existing neighborhoods and business interests. Ward One residents are concerned about the hidden costs of increased density, such as parking and traffic congestion, and strain on our already neglected roads, sewers and stormwater systems. As a community, we need to prioritize decisions related to affordable housing, improving traffic safety, protecting our river from the Gelman plume, and making progress on our climate action plans.
Challenges include the uncertainty of decreased funding from state and federal sources; our unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities; remediation of the Gelman plume; making measurable progress on our climate action goals and Sustainability Action Plan; maintaining our road, sewer, and stormwater systems; prioritizing pedestrian safety, especially for schoolchildren at crosswalks and bike lanes; and approving responsible developments that respect our neighborhoods and local businesses. We need to live within our means, and be aware that high property taxes make our city less affordable for many of our families and their children.
City council should be more responsive to citizen and local business priorities. City Council should make sure all new developments respect the charm and character of our City, and implement energy efficiency and renewable energy. Citizens are also calling for transparency from city staff surrounding issues related to plans with Federal authorities about the location of the proposed new train station. I oppose further local spending, beyond the millions of dollars already spent, so long as City staff refuse to reveal the location they are urging the Federal government to support. Citizens should have full access to this information.
I would focus on improved management of our limited financial resources. We should make sure we live within our means, and focus on direct services to residents, rather than on administrative costs. I would decrease spending on consultants and discretionary items, like further expenses on plans for a new train station, until our river and drinking water are protected, and our roads, sewer, stormwater, and pedestrian safety systems are maintained and improved. We need to set common-sense priorities and move forward on measurable climate action goals. The City should lead by example with regard to energy efficiency and renewable energy.