Meridian's Top Issues
We’re truly blessed to live in the City of Meridian. Just about every quality of life indicator proves it. We’ve (the city and its leaders) done a fantastic job navigating the tremendous challenges of growth which have created problems in other cities. It’s no wonder that we’re continually ranked as one of the best cities in America to live.
But look all around -- the growth isn’t going away. Commercial and residential construction, school enrollment and business development are continuing – and along with that, the challenges of keeping our city’s quality of life at an elevated level. Much of those decisions will rest with the Meridian City Council.
Now isn’t the time for on-the-job training. It’s not an opportunity for those who are new to city government to learn while governing. It requires someone who’s intimately familiar with growth.
As a former President of the City of Meridian Parks & Recreation Commission, former member of the Meridian Impact Fees Commission and as a Meridian Planning & Zoning Commissioner, I’ve immersed myself in studying and helping to govern the growth of Meridian. It’s given me the experience Meridian residents expect out of a prospective city councilman.
Here are some of the challenges facing us, and how we can anticipate and rise above them:
Realistic, Collaborative Traffic Planning
- People don't want platitudes. Like any employer, they expect candidates with solid accomplishments and a realistic plan for future actions.
- As a Planning and Zoning Commission member, I've dedicated myself to ensuring traffic plans match infrastructure needs. It's important to me that residents' voices are not only heard, but also factored into, all traffic-related planning and zoning decisions.
- As a city councilman, I'll continue making sure our traffic-related growth is reasoned and realistic. I'll also keep working with area residents potentially impacted by traffic-related growth, so their voices carry weight in city council deliberations.
- When developments are proposed to the city, there are hundreds of things to scrutinize, and hundreds of questions which need straightforward answers. As a Planning & Zoning Commissioner, I know what to look for and ask so our growth is smart.
- I’ve also come to value developments which are based on strategic plans which reflect the needs and wishes of area residents. The last thing we should do is destroy open space and put in a development we regret. As a city councilman, I’ll proactively work with area residents to ensure growth is well-planned and well-executed, and not rushed. Our neighborhoods and our city is stronger when we work together.
The Key to a Revitalized Downtown Meridian
- Meridian residents have voiced a desire for a fun, family oriented, revitalized downtown Meridian, including more restaurants with outdoor music, pet friendly areas, fun areas where kids could play and congregate safely, and destination spots like an outdoor amphitheater or a cultural arts center. These are very good ideas. I support them 100%.
- My campaign is advised by small and large business owners, moms and dads, grandmas and grandpas, teachers and students – a fantastic cross-section of our community. As a city councilman, I want to expand this informal advisory group to as many people as possible, so as we begin to seriously discuss these revitalization issues, we can – together -- make downtown Meridian the jewel of our city.
- We can best ensure continued economic development by diligently minimizing regulations on business. Government should get its hands out of the pockets of small business owners as much as possible, and let the free market do what it does best. That’s been my perspective as a Planning & Zoning Commissioner and as a small businessman. As a city councilman, you can bet your bottom dollar this philosophy will be expanded.
- One of the things I’ve admired about Mayor Tammy is that she’s always – and I mean always – seeking the opinions of Meridian residents. She goes out of her way, and spends far more than 60 hours a week, listening, dialoguing and interacting with city residents. No matter if it’s good news, bad news or a goofy idea, she’ll seek it. As a city councilman, I’ll try to do the same (though it’ll be tough to equal Tammy’s time schedule)!
I certainly don’t have all the answers…but together, we do!