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City of Bellevue, City Council, Ward 3

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    Michael Knebel
    (NP)

Biographical Information

If elected, what are your priorities for economic development in your city/town/village?

If elected, what would be your top priorities in an extreme weather event?

If elected, what would you consider your top three priorities? Please detail.

What is the biggest challenge in your community and how would you address it?

Occupation Sanctions Investigator with PayPal.
Education University of Nebraska - Lincoln. Studied Political Science and History
Volunteer experience Leonard Lawrence PTA Good News Church - camera man Habitat for Humanity Leadership team with international group Dad Edge Alliance Former State Chair of Libertarian Party of Nebraska
Address 3413 Mirror Ln
Marital Status Married
Age 40
Covid has drastically changed the way businesses of all sizes operate. I would want to review and eliminate barriers in the city codes for local businesses. We can allow people to be freer to operate a home or online business. Bellevue can be competitive with the surrounding areas if we keep local taxes low, and streamline code enforcement to make sure the rules and regulations we do have promote a healthy environment of growth. Large scale commercial real estate may not be as big of a draw now that some corporations have gone to a work from home setting. So we as a city must be willing to adapt and try new things. Ultimately, the government doesn't create jobs, we just have to provide an environment for them to thrive. And finally, I would not vote for any project that required Tax Increment Financing (TIF) because these projects do not financially benefit the city in the long run.
One of the things the city is tasked with is making sure the roads are clear and safe. Bellevue does a great job of clearing and prepping the roads before and during a snow storm. Top priority is always safety of those that must be out in weather, and ensuring resources are available to deal with the clean up and repair after a major storm. When the tornadoes came through a few years back, the communities banded together to clean, offer support, and offer services. We all were able to do that because the city provided us with the basic tools. But I would like to hold a town hall and ask how can we be at our best as a city during these weather events? With our shared knowledge and shared vision for the city, I believe these town halls could help us find the tasks that the citizens feel are most important to maintain as well.
1. Infrastructure - I would review what is working well, what could be improved, and what should be cut. I've never complained about our snow plow crew, they have been fantastic. But I do think we should sell or change Haworth Park. The campgrounds have been continually flooded, and we are not utilizing our riverfront as well as other communities. It's time to find a new use for this area that fits with Bellevue's heritage. We should also review the abortion clinic on Mission, and figure out if this truly fits with our town and our shared vision. 2. Bellevue PD - We risk losing good officers to other areas if we don't pay them more. At the same time, we need to make sure that they have a set up which produces the best police work. 3. Regular town halls - Utilizing the process Appreciative Inquiry, I would like to work with small groups of citizens to find new solutions and create plans for growth and success
This past year has shown us that a good police force must be supported by their community. I was fortunate enough to ride along with one of our officers this summer and see the variety of calls he responded to. Police are asked to do a lot in this community, and some things are better handled by other organizations or departments. How do we create a balance so that we have maximum individual freedoms in a city, while maintaining a level of comfort and safety? We pay the good cops well, and remove some of the tasks that are not specific to their scope of work. This can look like having mental health calls handled by professionals in that area. We can create simpler city laws around CBD so that these businesses are freer to operate. I would not vote to defund the police. They would be supported in their goal to maintain a safe and free Bellevue.