Monday, October 17, 2005

My, That's an Awfully Large Election You're Having!

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As I've said before, while holding my tongue and swatting away at the angels of my better nature, BlogAsheville is not in the business of advocating for specific candidates. We're here to inform and encourage folks like you (yes, you) about the goings-on in our local political scene while extolling the many virtues of blogging / online diary writing / online magazine publishing / bloviating cyberinvective.

In the spirit of all that is good and right in politics here are some fun facts about our two candidates for Mayor, Dr. Joe Dunn and Terry M. Bellamy:
Image Hosted by ImageShack.usDr. Joe Dunn does not have a campaign website up, but he did a Q&A that's readily available here. I'll post some highlights for you:

"What are your top priorities?

1. My number one priority is to reestablish good relations with the county and state delegation.

2. Continue the war on drug problems in Asheville by adding sufficient resources in manpower to do the job.

3. Return more tax dollars to “basic city services” for which they were intended.

4. Make our city staff become more “user friendly.”

5. I set up a task force to streamline development processes in the areas of permitting, inspections, and design review. Staff has been slow to follow up. This is still a top priority to reduce as much red tape as possible.

6. I championed setting up a task force to think “outside the box” to see what avenues we could explore for affordable housing. We need to press forward with common sense solutions.

7. Create a candid dialogue between the Chamber of Commerce, State Delegation, county, and the city to resolve the civic center issues.

8. Protect our air and water quality.

9. Take a closer look at “Smart Growth” policies and any potential downside to this kind of development.

10. Set realistic budgets that reflect the needs of our community.

11. To continue to be sensitive to neighborhood issues.

12. To continue to recruit new jobs and industry to our area."

"What are your views about growth and development in Asheville?

My voting record is very clear that I support good development in Asheville. Good development must be encouraged by our city staff. City staff must become more “user friendly” as well. I set up a task force to begin looking at ways to streamline the development process and remove as much red tape as possible. Staff has been slow to react to some of the changes. A task force was set up seven years ago, but many of their ideas still have not been acted upon. Our UDO still needs streamlining as well."

"What should be the City’s role in helping businesses succeed?

The city staff needs to “listen” to the business community. The “listening” needs to then produce “action.” I am not convinced city staff has reacted quickly enough. We need “one stop shopping” for building, permitting, and design review."

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usTerry M. Bellamy has an extensive website up (link), and here I'll cull just a few pieces that parallel Dunn's above Q&A:

Top Priorities:

"Economic Development & Diversification

Accessible Health Care

Improved Schools for our Children

Growth, Development, and Air Quality

Affordable Housing"

Views about Growth and Development in Asheville:

"Work to create additional small area plans that are created by neighborhood residents in collaboration with business owners, property owners in and around the neighborhood, city staff and other interested parties. These plans will serve as a neighborhood’s vision for their area. The West End/Clingman Avenue neighborhood residents created a plan that is a guide for development in their neighborhood. The developers wishing to develop in the WECAN area or any other neighborhood with a neighborhood plan will have an understanding of what the neighborhood envisions for their area, while at the same time neighborhood residents will understand that the vacant lots that are in their area today may not always remain undeveloped. The plan will be a guide but not a mandatory tool for a project. This could potentially reduce a significant amount of negative response to development in and around neighborhoods.

The best thing we can do to improve air quality is focus growth in the areas of our community that would benefit from redevelopment, rather than on the farms and forests that surround Asheville. We need to create pedestrian oriented developments and multi-modal transportation. We should support preservation of our historic buildings. Additionally, I would like to see us focus on implementing our Greenways Master Plan to preserve open space and create places where people can walk and bike in Asheville."

City's role in helping businesses succeed:

"Companies who are looking to move to the community or expand need essential support from local government – good infrastructure, including streets, sidewalks, access to quality air and ground transportation and high quality water and sewer service. In addition, they need an educated and trainable work force and quality office space with access to broadband internet service. As Mayor I will lead City Council in working closely with the City Manager and City Economic Development Director, Advantage West and Chamber of Commerce to assist in recruiting major industry and small businesses, while continuing to provide economic incentives to new and expanding businesses already located here."

BlogAsheville will continue to bring you information on the race for mayor as well as for city council seats. We invite all candidates to contribute writings here at BlogAsheville ( or to send us graphic ads you'd like to see on our sidebar. Thanks to all the candidates for making the sacrifices necessary to serve the public, and we wish you the best.

{so how'd I do with the non-partisanship? it's really, really hard. if you want to advocate for a specific candidate, feel tree to do so in the comments section. BlogAsheville is a safe, dynamic place to do that.}


Edgy Mama said...

Thanks, Screwy. Big pat on the back for being so open and unbiased.

You know whom I will vote for...

syntax said...

i know it shouldn't matter in the grand scheme of things as long as all of the information is available to their potential constituents, but i'm really impressed with the layout of terry bellamy's website. someone was working some joomla magic there! and it's not embarrassing like charles taylor's official house website is. i swear, chuckie's website is the 21st century equivalent of a roadside letter sign in front of a convenience store that reads "GOD BLESS AMERICA CIGARETTES $1.99".

Jim Jenkins said...

$1.99 cigarettes??? Where???

1000 black lines said...

Since when did BlogAsheville become Fox News (i.e. "Far and Balanced")? Hah! Seriously, nice work Screwy on presenting both candidates for Mayor.