Affordable Housing: Ann Arbor is in dire need of more Affordable Housing. Arrowwood Hills Cooperative is the perfect example of great affordable housing. We should look at possibly acquiring the Brewer lot for Affordable Housing. Over the years I have seen the 1st Ward become one of the most developed wards in the city, yet we have less affordable housing through those developments. The Barton Greens on Pontiac Trail is a great example. We need to hold developers accountable for paying into the Affordable Housing fund. We need to use the money in the Affordable Housing fund for creating and supporting more cooperatives and other affordable housing measures in Ann Arbor. City Council needs to look for projects that will bring more affordable and equitable housing to Ann Arbor and the 1st Ward. Right now Ann Arbor is not affordable for many people, and this needs to be the main focus of City Council in the future.
Development: I support reasonable and responsible development. Development on steroids though has been the common theme over these last few years. The Barton Green project and Lowertown are irresponsible developments which hurt the neighborhoods and community. I think it is important that we look at Transit Oriented Development, and I would support doing more research and studies to see if it makes sense for Ann Arbor. We want Ann Arbor to be a place where people can work and live. City Council should not be working for developers. Instead they should be working for Ann Arbor residents. I would like us to have more local developers and ones who are willing to pay into the affordable housing fund and work with neighbors to have the best development possible.
Transparency/Accountability: At the last City Council meeting there was a long debate over releasing a memo from the City Attorney’s office to the public. Our City Charter states that the City Attorney should be filing all opinions with the City Clerk, but it is not happening. This is very disturbing to me and has been consistent with certain members of council over the years. I remember back to the proposed train station where the council did not want to share any information with the public. We are public officials and we are accountable to the taxpayers of Ann Arbor. I support releasing documents to residents, involving residents in an honest and truthful discourse on issues. Transparency is the underpinning of a democratic society and unfortunately some on council want to be obstructionists. I promise residents of the 1st Ward and Ann Arbor, I will be transparent in every decision I make. We may not agree on an issue but you will know the information I know and why I came to my decision.
November Elections: I support November Nonpartisan elections. I was shocked at the lack of democracy my opponent showed in her support for only partisan elections in August. Voters should have a say in this issue, and when the Mayor vetoed this opportunity, I felt it was not only disenfranchising voters, but also showed a lack of respect for the educated public in Ann Arbor. We need more participation in our city government and November elections will facilitate this. I believe it is a core democratic value to have the most participation in elections. I would support putting November nonpartisan elections on the ballot because it is the most progressive and democratic idea when it comes to election reform here in Ann Arbor. I believe that Ranked Choice Voting is a good possibility, but only when you have nonpartisan elections and the vote is determined in November.