A Friend of Taxpayers, Not Special Interests.
I’m a genuine, common sense leader and conservative who values honesty and integrity. As such, I will fight for the rights of my fellow taxpayers, not special interests that have no business in our backyard. I believe it is absolutely critical that our County Commissioners be fully independent of any special interests, vendors, and those who do business with county government. Paulding’s taxpayers deserve commissioners who will look out for their interests first and foremost.
Economic Sustainability, Infrastructure, & Jobs.
Paulding County’s current economy as a “bedroom community” is not sustainable and our infrastructure is increasingly overburdened. The homeowners of our county cannot bear this burden much longer; the cost of home ownership in Paulding County is reaching record highs, and people are beginning to relocate to other counties as a result. In addition, the resurgence of residential development combined with outdated zoning ordinances is creating additional stress on our roads, schools, and utilities. Complicating the matter further, our current commissioners are slowly driving those developers away to surrounding counties as a result of their inability to get things done in a timely manner, constantly kicking decisions down the road with tabled motions and moratoriums, risking a repeat of 2008 when development came to a halt.
Four years ago, our current commissioner campaigned on making Paulding a business-friendly community, on transforming our county government into one that is an example of efficiency, transparency, and effectiveness, and on bringing more jobs to diversify our tax base. Nothing has changed. In fact, I believe it’s only gotten worse.
As Post 4 Commissioner, I’ll be dedicated to promoting Paulding County to targeted commerce sectors, recruiting good-paying jobs, diversifying our tax digest, and reducing the tax burden currently being shouldered by homeowners. Additionally, I will review zoning ordinances, working with Property & Zoning to revamp building codes and ordinances to ensure home values are protected and residential, business, and commercial zones don’t encroach upon one another. I will work with the county’s utilities departments to review the existing infrastructure and develop a common-sense plan to make the necessary upgrades, starting with mapping the entire county for clean, running water and sewer.
Local Economic Development in a Global Economy.
We live in a global economy, and the bottom-line is, Paulding County is 40 miles from Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, making it one stop from the rest of the world. In fact, HWY 278 is a direct, no-turn route to Atlanta’s airport (see for yourself! Google Map Link).
Why our current leaders haven’t capitalized on this to recruit international corporations to Paulding County makes no sense to me. Our current board even voted to decrease the budget for economic development, with current Post 4 Commissioner making the motion. Of course, he has also gone on record as saying economic development and job growth isn’t his job. It’s painfully clear to me that this B.O.C. doesn’t understand how a Global Economy works. Meanwhile, every county that surrounds Paulding is actively investing in their economic development budgets, commercial tax digest, and job growth; there is a clear correlation between investing and growth.
As Post 4 Commissioner, I’ll find ways to increase the county’s budget for economic development and recruit commercial growth. As the need for site development arises in recruiting businesses, I’ll work to Keep Our Pennies in Paulding by supporting the hiring of local companies and contractors. I’ll seek public/private partnerships between our educational leaders and potential employers, and work as an advocate for the cities of Dallas, Hiram, and Braswell. I’ll encourage growth in the outdoor recreation industry which averages $887B in consumer spending annually, provided $51.2B in revenue for local and state economies across the U.S. ($1.8B in Georgia) in 2016, and supports 7.6M jobs across the U.S..
I’ll also encourage and advocate for growth in the recruitment of the green-technology and green-construction industries, and seek ways to grant/fund incentives for sustainable LEED projects and alternative energy sources.
Silver Comet Field & Paulding County Airport.
It may seem like the “airport issue” has finally gone away, but it hasn’t. And, much to the embarrassment of our great county, it won’t be going away for a long, long time.
The airport is broke, embroiled in lawsuits for the foreseeable future, and whether or not it will be commercial is no longer up to us. It’s up to the courts and the outcome will not be known until the lawsuits end. Where any of us stand on commercialization today is officially a mute point and it’s time for us to move on. Sadly, Paulding County is losing to a civil war between our current board, the airport authority, and special interests and its costing taxpayers thousands of dollars per day. This must stop! In the meantime, we have a beautiful multi-million dollar airport, once the jewel of the county, barely being used.
Let me be clear: I am not opposed to a commercial airport; I support anything that puts the airport back to work for Paulding’s taxpayers. Commercial or not. Even as a general aviation airport, we could be enticing FedEx or UPS to fly cargo in, but right now, thanks to multiple lawsuits and the involvement of special interests, it’s a big black-eye and massive deterrent for any potential economic development. Plans for a commercial airport on that property pre-date my birth! The City of Atlanta bought the 10,000+ acre tract of land here in Paulding County for the expressed and intended purpose of building a regional extension of Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport in 1972. The City of Atlanta also happens to be the single-largest landowner in Paulding County. Why all of a sudden are we against it in 2013-2014? Where were the protesters in 1972? I would much rather Paulding County be in control of the operations at Silver Comet Field, instead of the city of Atlanta. Wouldn’t you? That’s what’s really at stake here.
As Post 4 Commissioner, I will highlight Silver Comet Field as the incredible facility it is and it will become a key piece of a common sense plan for bringing the employers and jobs we need to Paulding County.
Public Safety Must Be Our Constant Focus.
I’m a proud advocate for law enforcement and first responders. Adequately providing the county with a well-trained police force, courtrooms and fire protection is the primary function of our local government. As Post 4 Commissioner, I will work hard for those who put their life on the line every day to keep us safe, making sure they have the resources they need to safely keep our streets and families safe, in every corner and every community of Paulding County. I’ll also work hard to keep them in Paulding County. Too often our Public Safety departments serve as a training ground for Bartow, Cherokee, Cobb, and Fulton Counties who pay their LEOs and first responders higher pay rates. While ensuring we are responsibly getting the most for our tax dollars, and looking for funding sources outside of tax hikes, public safety and ‘feet on the street’ must remain our constant focus, especially as our communities continue to grow.
Within the first 100 days as Post 4 Commissioner, I will work with the Board Chairman in supporting the Sheriff’s and Fire & Rescue offices to create a common-sense plan focused on keeping our communities safe, while also working hard to get a long-overdue pay hike for our Sheriff’s Deputies. They’ve earned it.
Inter-Department Communication & Planning.
My background includes two decades of experience and expertise in communication and team-building in Fortune 500, Small Business, and Church/nonprofit settings. Before becoming a business owner myself, the largest portion of my professional background includes 10.5 years as a minister and a missionary where my primary focus was serving as a community builder and teacher. It often involved building bridges between conflicting agendas and parties for the greater good of the community. I plan to put those skills to good use for the future of Post 4 & Paulding County by building bridges between the diverse communities that encompass Post 4.
Inter-departmental communication and a collaborative planning efforts lead to better, faster, more effective results. This isn’t a place for politics or pandering to a select few. This is a place for true, common sense leadership. As Post 4 Commissioner, I’ll work with our Board Chairman to bring departments together, increase communication, and more effectively address the needs of Paulding County in real-time, especially in the case of emergency management and inclement weather. I’ll make sure the School Board always has immediate access to our Emergency Management resources as well.
We Are A County of Communities.
Paulding County is ONE county made up of MANY communities, and each community has its own unique needs. Residents from each of those communities want the same things; they want good-paying jobs so we can share in the bounty of prosperity, protective measures to ensure our green spaces and home values are protected, law enforcement and first responders who are actively involved in the community and have the resources they need to keep our communities and families safe, clear and accessible leaders who are trustworthy & held accountable, and clean, running water.
This can’t happen if we allow special interests to continue to divide and conquer our county – we have to work together, and move beyond the mistakes and empty promises by crooked politicians of the past. We have to constantly assess and learn, while keeping a clear and supported vision for the future in front of us.
As Post 4 Commissioner, I’ll bring a fair and balanced voice for all of Post 4 to the Board of Commissioners. I’ll establish regular opportunities for residents from Braswell, Burnt Hickory, Cedarcrest, Crossroads, and New Hope to give their input and express their concerns, in a manner that is convenient to them. I believe we all have an important role to play in Paulding County. There is one body, but it has many parts. But all its many parts make up one body. Asking a busy Mom, a busy Dad, or a Business Owner to show up to a Tuesday night B.O.C. meeting and calling that transparent & open government is an insult.