As a former charter officer of the City of Gainesville, I have seen how the city commission works at its best and at its worst. At its best, I believe the commission ought to challenge city government to be helpers, not hurdles to citizens. I believe that in the thousands of interactions with citizens, there are opportunities for learning and understanding. I believe Gainesville 3.0 ought to begin with changing city government from a culture of no to one of yes.
Gainesville 3.0 needs to begin with a mission to have people and organizations invest in the community with a sense of community once again. While the community is rich in human capital, we must also retain and grow financial investment capital as well. That capital will flow through communities in the form of good-paying jobs, better housing opportunities, and hope for a more fulfilling life.
The process must include a commitment to retaining the equally rich fabric of Gainesville’s neighborhoods. Each Gainesville neighborhood has an identity and value worth preserving. The challenge is protecting it, while at the same time improving upon it.
Gainesville 3.0 includes the utility’s commitment to continue as the state leader in renewable energy. As the general manager of the utility, I was a champion of renewable energy, making the biomass plant work and executing a solar contract which will triple GRU’s solar generation. However, the next steps are ever more crucial, and we must be cautious about burdening the utility with more debt than customers can afford.
Toward that end, city government must return to more business-like SMART goals, not aspiration goals. SMART goals are represented as being specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based. Every year, the city commission ought to issue a formal written progress report to the citizens.
The City of Gainesville is a municipal corporation formed by the people, for the people. As mayor, I commit to building on our shared sense of purpose, and empowering citizens in every interaction. I commit to making Gainesville 3.0 user-friendly.
Vote Ed For Mayor
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