As your County Commissioner, I will focus on core values that I believe we share as a community:
- Protecting our unique and valuable natural resources;
- Advocating for smart, sustainable economic development;
- Searching for data-based, innovative solutions to tough social problems; and
- Supporting improved planning and transportation that help protect our quality of life.
Conservation & Environmental Protection
Protecting our unique land and water resources is the right thing to do. It also supports our economy and is central to who we are as a community.
The city and the county need to work together on economic development, public safety, fire and rescue services, planning, transportation, conservation and recreation, and social services. We can achieve more together than separately, and make more efficient use of every public dollar.
We should encourage development in areas where public infrastructure (like roads and water systems) already exist and public services (like public safety and public transit) can be provided efficiently, while protecting undeveloped parts of the county as conservation and rural working lands.
Alachua County must be a partner with community efforts to establish new homegrown businesses, grow existing local businesses, attract new employers, and train our residents for new opportunities. Redevelopment that brings new investment to existing downtowns already developed but struggling areas such the Waldo Road corridor is especially important.
- The thousands international residents here in Alachua County are vital to our community, and help make us a magnet for future talent and investment from around the world. Their contributions create businesses, jobs, and tax revenues that benefit everyone. I have been a leader in supporting these goals through my work with Welcoming Gainesville & Alachua County.
More should be done to help our residents--especially children from lower-income families--benefit from the growing local economy. Alachua County cannot create these opportunities alone. We must work with the schools, UF, Santa Fe College, and local businesses.
We must find ways to better fund the Children's Services Council. This great program is working to create better outcomes for children, which helps our community and reduces costs.
As commissioner, I will keep working to develop Grace Marketplace as a comprehensive homeless empowerment center that provides training, employment, health and mental services. We should also offer more flexible, cost-effective, and high quality housing options across our community.
Roads and Public Transit
We must better fund existing roads repair and maintenance, while continuing to improve safety for all users.
We must continue to support a well-integrated transit system that serves all residents in the urban area. It is especially important to connect people in low income areas to places they work and shop.