Friday, November 4, 2022

Last Thoughts on my Campaign and Remember to Vote on November 8

This election will have significant impact on the direction this city takes.  Not only does the city face financial challenges, we have yet to do the work needed to understand them.  Like many organizations throughout the pandemic, we've lost key personnel and it will be a challenge to find and onboard new talent.  The city also struggles with transparency and accountability, being unable to produce a schedule of maintenance and other regular activities.

Throughout all of this, most people in Clayton are satisfied - we have a fantastic police force that have endorsed my campaign, along with our former Police Chief and Finance Director.  In this safe environment, we have fantastic parks and trails, and great schools, making Clayton a wonderful place to live and raise a family.

But with a current deficit in our budget, many of these things may be at risk. Unfortunately, the current majority on the Council has refused to make any cuts to address our budget shortfalls. Choosing deficit spending rather than reducing expenditures has exacerbated the problem.

Deficit spending should be reserved for extraordinary times. As a city we need to live within our means. Before any tax increase is considered, the city should do everything in its power to reduce expenses and increase efficiencies – raising taxes should be an absolute last resort. For the Council to place a tax measure on the ballot, 4 out of 5 Councilmembers need to vote in favor. This means that if just two Councilmembers are opposed to a tax measure, it will NOT move forward. If elected, I will not support raising taxes except as a last resort.

The city has a lot of work ahead to increase operational efficiency and fiscal discipline. Unless and until that happens I will not support any revenue measure. I know Kim Trupiano feels similarly. If elected, Kim and I add up to two which shuts down the possibility of more taxes and we can instead, shift our focus away from squandering resources with useless surveys and trying to increase taxes and instead, focus on serious discussions about cost savings, efficiencies, and other ways to reduce our overall expenditures – what we should have been doing since I raised this issue back in the middle of 2021.

If you have not yet already voted, please do so by November 8.  You can vote for two candidates and I am asking for your support and your vote so that together, we focus forward and overcome any challenges the city faces.