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|October 11-17, 2007
Boulder City Council Candidate Questionnaire
Boulder Weekly asked our 22 City Council candidates to answer
questions about issues we believe are crucial to the city's future.
The full text of their answers appears below.
3. What is your profession and place of employment?
4. How long have you lived in Boulder?
5. What issue(s) prompted you to run for City Council?
6. Why should voters choose you over other qualified candidates?
7. What would you do to improve Boulder's economic stability?
8. What role should City Council play in transforming Boulder
into a sustainable, self-sufficient community?
9. What would you do as a councilmember to make Boulder
more hospitable for non-rich residents (both middle class and lower income)?
10. What ideas do you oppose for Boulder's future? In other
words, what would you not do if elected to council?
Eric R. Rutherford
Larry V. Quilling
Shawn L. Coleman
Susan M. Osborne
Susan K. Peterson
Philip J. Bradley
Seth Brigham (no response)
Andrew Harrison (no response)
Phil Hernandez (no response)
1. Adam Massey
3. Self-employed, property management
4. 12 years
5. I’m not an activist. No single issue prompted me to run. I enjoy working on all of Boulder’s complex issues and wish to help us provide good local government
6. I listen best.
7. Boulder’s economic vitality program is a good start. We need to evaluate it and update it based on its effectiveness. The development of a medium sized conference center will be of great benefit.
8. Boulder can become a more sustainable place but will always remain part of a regional, national, and international economy. Council has led with ideas on energy, recycling, and transportation options. It can continue to do so but must look at the total costs and benefits of any options and make pragmatic decisions
9. The city needs to improve the effectiveness of our public transportation, affordable housing, and economic vitality programs that benefit us all. We should also try to bring more affordable retail options to town.
10. In general, I will not vote to put citizen initiatives on the ballot or support ideas that are the responsibility of the federal or other governments.
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1. Angelique Espinoza
3. Partner Owner of Free Range Geeks, providing technology support for companies that don’t have their own IT staff. Consultant to Intercambio de Comunidades, developing a pilot program to support diverse and integrated school communities.
4. 16 years
5. I’m concerned about Boulder’s future as a truly sustainable community, and I have a strong personal commitment to public service. We need to look more closely at how our economic, social and environmental priorities fit together. Right now our city revenues are strained to the limit, and it’s projected to get worse. We are losing our middle-income population and becoming more and more a community of the wealthy and the poor, with all of the social and environmental problems that entails. And we’re not making adequate progress toward our Climate Action Plan goals for carbon emissions reduction. My goals on Council would be to energize our economy, strengthen our diverse community, and keep Boulder clean and green, for the common good. A strong economy will generate the financial resources we need to cover our basic services, and meet our environmental and community goals. A diverse community, with a broad range of economic levels and ages, forms a healthy social base for a strong, diversified economy and supports a rich cultural climate. And if most of those people can afford to live and work in the same area, we can get a handle on traffic and carbon emissions. I take global warming seriously and I think we need to do more to encourage average citizens to take basic measures to conserve energy and save money, like compact florescent bulbs and good insulation.
6. If the voters elect me to Council, I will use common sense for the common good. I offer integrity, passion, fairness and concern for the good of the whole community, not just for organized groups that champion particular interests, but for regular folks who rarely think about local politics and yet are still profoundly affected by the decisions city leaders make. I’m a long-time Boulder resident and CU alum. I work with local nonprofit, Intercambio de Comunidades, developing a program for more integrated school communities. My husband and I are raising our son here. I enjoy volunteering at Crestview Elementary, our neighborhood school. We live in the Nomad co-housing community where we work together to live a more environmentally sustainable and cooperative lifestyle. My three partners and I started Free Range Geeks to provide technology support for companies without their own IT staff, which gives me insight into Boulder’s business climate. I’m also involved in several community organizations; on the Board of Boulder Business and Professional Women, as the affirmative action coordinator for my political party, and as a volunteer with Reading to End Racism. My demonstrated leadership, collaboration and listening skills; my involvement with the underrepresented and underserved in our community; and my experience as a Boulder resident for the past 16 years, as a student, young professional, business person, renter, homeowner, cohouser, community leader, volunteer and parent, gives me a broad base of perspectives, knowledge and relationships to serve our community well.
7. One of my top priorities on Council would be to energize our economy and make Boulder the best place to do business for business that makes sense in Boulder. The economic vitality program is making headway in cultivating a more welcoming climate for business. I support continued funding because the dollars we invest now will pay off in strengthened revenue to cover our basic services and meet our environmental and community goals. Several factors contribute to the growing gap between our city income and expenses: an aging population with the share of households 65 and older expected to double by 2030; a shift from a goods (taxed) to a service-based (not taxed) economy; and the fact that the city's cost of doing business, including employee health care and infrastructure construction, is rising faster than the general inflation rate of the sales tax base. That means we need to spend city dollars wisely. We also need a strong economic base of people from a broad range of income levels and age groups who live and shop here, and the businesses who serve them. Other sources, such as regional revenue sharing, are worth exploring, so long as they are balanced and fair. The Blue Ribbon Commission on revenue stabilization will be proposing 71 recommendations. If elected, I would look forward to reviewing these options and choosing a broad package that spreads the burden equitably and meets our future revenue needs.
8. Transforming Boulder into a sustainable, self-sufficient community will take vision, leadership, planning, and collaboration. City and regional leaders, leaders in business, non-profit and other government sectors, and city residents all play a part in creating our shared future. It is important to remember that Boulder exists always in relationship to its neighboring communities. The City Council’s role is to gauge the broad community’s needs and desires as we define ourselves going forward, and to create favorable conditions for moving in that direction. The Council has a few tools for removing obstacles to sustainability and self-sufficiency. For example, funding the business incentive program and business liaison staff will help energize our economy and promote a sustainable revenue stream. Tackling the major obstacle to social sustainability, the lack of affordable and moderate housing, will require working with the City Manager to hire an innovative Planning Director who understands our goals for affordable housing and its relationship to our growth, and infrastructure challenges. Modifying certain city ordinances to promote the use of solar energy will help us achieve environmental sustainability. If elected, I would focus on actions that give us the most balanced return in all three areas, economic, social and environmental. Sometimes, of course, the best choice will improve only one or two areas, in which case I would look for an overall balance in the actions we take as a Council. Only by advancing as one complete system can we hope achieve true sustainability for the future.
9. One of my goals on Council would be to strengthen our diverse community. For people with lower and middle incomes, it becomes increasingly difficult to afford rent, much less a mortgage in Boulder. And there are few places within city limits to buy inexpensive jeans for kids who will grow out of them in a year. As the wealthier population grows and the middle class declines, we have an increasing barbell distribution of income groups which is neither environmentally nor socially sustainable. With the loss of cohesiveness that a balanced diversity of income groups brings, we will see continued socio-economic and cultural fragmentation, intolerance, and polarity — an inhospitable environment to be sure. As a councilmember, I would look to reverse this trend by addressing the lack of retail and housing options for these groups, which is a primary obstacle to social sustainability. How we handle this difficult question in the next several years will speak to our fundamental values as a community. Every option we have to preserve existing or create new affordable retail and housing comes at a cost, but so does failure to act. Right now there are a lot of people thinking about and working on this in different ways, but we lack a unifying vision and strong leadership. I would prioritize hiring an innovative Planning Director who can bring the parties to the table and bring forward a renewed commitment to move forward toward our common goals as a community.
10. I would not favor any one area — economic, social or environmental — in working toward a truly sustainable future. As a mother of a young child, I take global warming seriously, but we cannot settle for solutions that are accessible only to wealthy communities and ignore regional impacts. I would not look to government to solve problems that we as residents are unwilling to participate significantly in solving. Although mandates can be efficient in the short run, incentives generally work better to achieve long term, internalized change. I would not favor the interests of any one group over the common good. And I would not stand for the continued socio-economic and cultural fragmentation of our community.
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1. Crystal Gray
3. Adams County Parks Director
4. 38 years
5. My experience, and record, of working for a sustainability community in all areas — social, environmental and economic is what prompted me to run for re-election when five council members will be leaving office and there is still important work to be done. We need to implement the innovative Social Sustainability Strategic Plan and Climate Action Plan and take the next steps in working on economic sustainability — which is to work with independent businesses, and the nonprofit and cultural groups that are an economic force in their own right. How we fund, and leverage, affordable housing is of particular importance to me. Another important issue to me is to make sure we focus on supporting CU and the federal labs as they are our intellectual “jewels,” as well as economic engines for the community. Urban design and how we grow and infill are continuing concerns for the community and areas that I want to take a leadership role in. Council needs leadership and experience to support the issues I listed and I can provide that — plus I enjoy the council work.
6. I was elected to council in 2003, and I have a record of supporting programs for all sectors of the community — environmental, social and economic — which is what I said I would do. My 38 years of community involvement with nonprofits, city boards (served on four and chaired three) and community groups let me hit the ground running when first elected and served me well as I represented all the residents. I have proven I can do the hard work of council. I have a positive and optimistic outlook. I do not get bogged down in conflict, and I am respectful of ideas and opinions of all residents — something I value as I spent a good deal of time on the other side of the podium. I am committed to continue the work of the social sustainability committee to create a more inclusive Boulder where all voices are heard — and most importantly — we make an effort to seek out opinions and ideas from those that we normally do not hear from.
7. As a member of city council, we asked the primary employers (those that brought in revenue from outside Boulder that contributes to positive revenue for the city) what could we do to make sure we retain and support them. Based on their input, we developed the Economic Incentive Program. We now need to grow that program and expand it to other sectors such as our independent businesses and the nonprofit and cultural business sector. We often forget that nonprofits and cultural businesses, when looked at as a group, are an economic force and play a role in sustainable tourism, as well as provide services that government could not afford to pay for. We have worked hard to develop positive relationships with the business community, and we need to expand that. We also need to work on stabilizing the revenue for the city of Boulder so we can meet the needs of the community and provide for public-safety services as well as our parks, recreation programs and library. Finally, we need to support CU, the federal labs and the scientific community and work with our congressional delegation and state legislature to rally support and educate them as to the statewide importance that these Boulder mainstay institutions have.
8. We should pay attention to all sectors of the community — environmental, social and economic and be pro-active and think of the impact of our decisions we make today on the future. We learned that hard lesson when we did not take a leadership role in providing for our retail needs and let Crossroads fail. We need to be aggressive in reducing our carbon emissions as individuals and as a community. If our snow pack is reduced from global warming, our water supply is reduced, and that is not sustainable. Adoption of the Climate Action Plan is a first step, but we need to expand it into waste-reduction sectors, a community composting program, community photo-voltaic sites (for those that cannot do this where they live), transportation options and preservation of agricultural lands for close-in food production. We need to take seriously the Xcel franchise renewal or municipalization so we make sure we buy our power from a strong renewal portfolio and not just coal. We need to provide a diversity of housing and make sure that lower-income housing is “greenbuilt” so utility bills are low, as are carbon emissions. Council is taking leadership in this with allocation of funds to change low-income older mobile home parks to “green” housing for the residents. We need to pay attention to our parks and our open space and manage them in a sustainable manner. Everyone needs areas they can play, hike and recreate in to boost their spirits — and keep healthy.
9. This is an area that the social sustainability council committee I served on has been addressing. The first thing council has been focusing on is to make sure that city departments look at their programs and initiative through the filters of social, environmental and economic sustainability — which means to think broadly of the entire community. Here are a few things: We need to understand the barriers that keep residents from feeling a part of the community and to remove those barriers. We are asking all residents to help council create a shared vision of sustainability — check out the city website for the Boulder Resident Survey and take it! We need recreation programs that are affordable. We need a diversity of shopping and businesses for all income levels. We can make sure we have a diversity of housing that serves all residents. We need neighborhood parks that are close by and have activities in those parks that are free and fun — such as is proposed at the new Valmont Park. On this issue Council member Robin Bohannan said, “Crystal understands the daunting challenges Boulder faces in removing the barriers that prevent all residents from access to the possibility of opportunity. Her leadership is required to implement the city’s social sustainability plan — groundbreaking work that she helped develop. Join me in electing Crystal Gray to ensure a sustainable community for all.”
10. I wouldn’t be agenda driven. I wouldn’t exclude good ideas and new programs. I wouldn’t support conflict, and I wouldn’t support programs that are not good for the entire community. I would not support programs or projects that are not sustainable and that don’t contribute for a sustainable future. I would not support programs that are disrespectful of members of the community. I oppose selling Open Space land or cutting funding for trails, restoration, maintenance, education and outreach. I would support programs that increase our carbon emissions or contribute to the waste stream. I would not support sprawl or insensitive infill projects. I would not support recreation programs that price out average families or individual residents. I do not support the continued war in Iraq as that takes away from important national programs that impact Boulder. And finally, I do not support hate crimes and those that commit them.
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1. Eric R Rutherford
3. Commercial Real Estate Broker with Wright-Kingdom, Inc., and a property owner.
4. 16 years.
5. There are three issues that prompted me to run for City Council: One thing about this country is that if you want to change things, you have to vote or you have to be in office. I really feel that every year I just get more idealistic, and I would like to start initiating policy rather than having policy implemented on me. My goal is to use my diverse background to bring a balance decision-making process to City Council. I am concerned about the economic health of our community and our ability to pay for services that the people of Boulder have been accustomed to. Cities usually provide for basic services such as the police, fire and libraries. In Boulder, in addition to those services, we also provide for open space, parks, human services and projects like the climate action plan. Also, my children are of two different cultures; I would like them to grow up in a safe and idyllic environment.
6. I went to Fairview High School, as did my brothers and sisters; I know Boulder. As a graduate from the United States Naval Academy, I know the importance of integrity. As a college team captain, participant in the Hula Bowl All Star game and an Honorable Mention All-American in Football, I know dedication. As an officer in the United States Marine Corps, I know leadership. As a Federal Agent on the border of Texas and Mexico I know service to the country. As a traveler who traveled around the world for one year and then traveled through Latin America for one year, I know how to listen to other points of view. As a commercial broker and property owner, I know business. As a Rotarian, I know service to the community. As a graduate of the University of Colorado executive MBA program, I know what it means to be proud of my university. As the husband of a Mexican woman, I understand cultural acceptance. As the father of two children who will grow up in two different cultures, I know why I want to serve on the City Council.
7. The economic situation in Boulder is different than it was 10 years ago. A large part of our tax base has left and one-third of our sales tax rate will start to expire in 2011. That is the reality. We can use two approaches, reactive or proactive. Reactive measures can include a head tax or a service tax among other ideas. Both these taxes will be met with resistance. I prefer the proactive approach and pursue/encourage the right type of business to come to Boulder, and encourage those employees to spend their money in Boulder. For example if the city knew in advance that a certain organization is outgrowing its present space or a new business is coming into town, the city could work with the prospect and landlords to redo some of the older buildings to accommodate this growth and/or relocation. One of the largest obstacles in Boulder is our dated buildings. Businesses sometimes do not plan far enough into the future and then need to make a decision quickly. We then we lose them to newer buildings in the outlying areas. We have entrepreneurs in Boulder who understand investment risks associated with starting cutting-edge businesses, and the city should reach out to these people. There should be obvious collaborative attempts with the University of Colorado in research and development. My market knowledge as a commercial real estate broker and as a graduate of CU’s MBA program would be a tremendous asset to City Council.
8. Cities usually provide for basic services such as the police, fire and libraries. In Boulder, in addition to those services, we also provide for open space, parks, human services and projects like the Climate Action Plan. Just as each person has income to cover the rent or a mortgage, we need to find the revenue to pay for the extra services that Boulder has been accustomed to. The city has to galvanize itself to find those income streams to protect those additional services. We do not want to be in a situation down the line where decision have to be made whether to maintain some of the open space trails or cut back on human services or close down a recreation center. The role of City Council should also be to monitor the economic health of the community. The question should be asked, “If a citizen lost his/her job today, is the present economic climate such that citizen could find a job tomorrow.” This answer partly addresses the question below. We need to be mindful that there are a lot of people in boulder who struggle financially in an expensive community like Boulder. We need to have empathy to their plight.
9. This is a three-part answer: housing, jobs and shopping. To get lower-income and middle-income households to live here, the city needs to have affordable rental and for-sale housing available. In addition, we need to have housing options, as one size does not fit all. There is a lot of money via the credit market that offers very low interest money that can be used to buy rental properties. That money is in addition to the money used for inclusionary zoning (a process where a developer contributes a percentage of the units he is building or a percentage of the costs to affordable housing). A big problem in Boulder is the tired-building syndrome. If the market can be created, the majority of the pre-1995 industrial buildings can be redone to accommodate clean high-tech/assembly/distribution type of jobs. Currently the buildings here have ceilings and are long. These were good for manufacturing. The new types of building required are shorter with high ceilings for storage. In order to complete the process, we need to provide a cheaper shopping alternative then what Boulder currently has.
10. We have initiated admirable project like the Climate Action Plan (designed to reduce greenhouse emissions in Boulder 7 percent below that of 1990) and the 85 percent waste-reduction goal (designed to reduce waste reduction 85 percent by 2017). I would like to see these projects implemented with the same energy and care they were initiated. More than 60 percent of greenhouse emissions come from buildings. Twenty years ago the city of boulder and the property mangers initiated a rental license agreement, designed to make rental units safe for tenants. The city is now using the rental license as a threat to landlords if landlords do not behave in certain way. There have been lawsuits and mistrust of city government on the part of property owners since then. Property owners are worried of top-down programs that are mired in bureaucracy and are forced on them. I was on the board of the Rental Housing Association, as well as the board of Commercial Brokers of Boulder. I would like to be the bridge between the mandates from the city and the actions of the property owners to reach the goals that were set out by the Climate Action Plan. In other words I would not tell property owners what to do — that approach will not work — but would work with them in such a way that both the city and owners benefit.
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1. Eugene Pearson
3. Operations Manager, Boulder County AIDS Project
4. 6 years
5. I am running championing our human services, re-establishing Boulder’s eminent role in environmental sustainability, and working to ensure a vibrant economy that is congruent with our wider community values. I would like to break the “bubble” mentality that we view ourselves with and that other’s view Boulder with. To do this Boulder must be a regional leader in all of the areas already mentioned and develop partnerships across the Front Range. We can accomplish our collective goals without Boulder loosing its unique character — we can “Keep Boulder Weird,” while defining good urban planning and sustainable development and economies in the 21st century. We must be innovative in our community to tackle the growing disparity between low-income and affluent people. One way to address this would be by coupling environmental and social goals. Climate Action Plan incentives could be used to renovate low-income and dilapidated rentals in the community to make them more efficient and more affordable. Ultimately, I am running because I want to shape the vision that will make Boulder an amazing community 50 and 100 years from now.
6. I represent several diverse demographics that are not currently represented on the City Council. I am a renter, work at a nonprofit (Boulder County AIDS Project), qualify for low-income housing, don’t own a car, am gay, live east of 28th, have experience managing a $32-million budget and represent young professionals in the community. Despite being young, I have earned the support of many diverse community leaders because I will serve as a consensus builder on City Council. I have been endorsed by County Commissioner and former Mayor Will Toor, CU-Regent Cindy Carlisle, RTD Board Member John Tayer, Deputy Mayor Suzy Ageton, State Senator Ron Tupa, and current and former City Council Members Robin Bohannan, Richard Polk, Suzy Ageton, Andy Schultheiss, and Françoise Poinsette to name a few. I have served with a number of organizations throughout the community including Boulder Pride as vice-president of the board, the Open Door Fund of the Community Foundation as grant chair, the CU-Environmental Center Board as community liaison, the PLAN-Boulder County Board of Directors, and as a founding member of New Era Colorado. I am an avid hiker, road-cyclist and bicycle commuter, swimmer at our community recreation centers, and yoga practitioner. In short — I share our collective community values and will provide a fresh perspective on the issues that our community faces.
7. Simplifying the onerous regulatory regime that small businesses face is vital to Boulder maintaining eminence as a center of innovation and invention. We can help reduce overhead by streamlining business interaction with the city so that the permitting and reporting processes can be navigated more easily. Our current incentive program is a good start in attracting and retaining companies that are congruent with community values like those in the natural foods, renewable energy and sporting goods “clusters.” I will seek enhanced support for Boulder’s tourism board and the arts, as these investments have delivered manifold returns for the city. In terms of revenue stabilization we need to look at the balance of taxes in the community to diversify away from being so heavily reliant on regressive taxes like the sales tax. Other ways of generating revenue for the community include exploring innovative solutions other communities have used like congestion pricing for transportation funding. We must be conscientious that other taxes like a head tax may only have short-term benefits at the expense of long-term economic viability; however, by working regionally such a proposal may not place Boulder businesses at an economic disadvantage.
8. An example of where the rubber meats the road is the Transit Village Area Plan. As the community increases density along transit corridors, it will be vital that we capitalize on the opportunity to shift the jobs/housing balance. This will satisfy the three facets of community sustainability. It is socially responsible to provide housing in close proximity to where people work so that families can spend more time together. Shifting this balance is also socially and economically responsible as it relieves some market demand so that middle-income members of the community can afford to live in Boulder. Shifting this balance is also environmentally responsible because it reduces sprawl that is induced by our lack of housing while mitigating the impacts of carbon emissions from vehicle miles traveled. The current plan does not appropriately shift this balance. As the smaller parcels come up for review, I will capitalize on the opportunity to shift this balance. Council must support policies that expand or preserve affordable and middle income housing stock. An example of this issue is pop-and-scrape redevelopment. The number of pop-and-scrapes concerns me because it reduces the availability of middle-income housing in the community and creates market pressure to increase home value. This practice is also incongruent with our zero-waste and Kyoto objectives. Massive homes have a much greater carbon footprint and resource intensity. A multi-faceted approach that maintains individual property owner rights, while fitting in the context of our collective community values is essential.
9. I have addressed some issues already like addressing pop-and-scrape development and working on economic vitality. Additionally, Boulder can be a community that champions a regional approach to establishing a living wage for our residents. By taking a regional approach we can cast a wide enough net that will not place our small businesses at a competitive disadvantage in the area. We can collaborate with CU-Boulder, Naropa and Front Range Community College to create job re-training programs and other innovations so that people can elevate the level of job they are eligible for. I will continue to be extremely supportive of our nonprofit community because they are the most efficient providers of human services. Additionally, we can ensure that fees for service and our taxing structure do not penalize those at the lowest end of the economic spectrum. I would also like to focus on children being able to have extremely reduced or free access to our recreation centers to provide healthy community centers and activities for youth of all economic classes. I will bring focus to the issues of low- and middle-income people as a member of that community and a passion for people.
10. I would not support policies that hurt small business owners and make doing business in town more onerous for them. The city needs to be mindful of the particular impact that overregulation has on local business owners. Whereas a large company or corporation has resources on hand, like lawyers and professional accountants, smaller businesses live on narrower margins and often must navigate rules themselves. I would work with local business owners to ensure that we are doing everything possible to create a climate that supports entrepreneurship and innovation. This is at the heart of ensuring a vibrant middle class in our community. Small business owners tend to be more committed to our community and maintain community relationships. Moreover, they reinvest their good fortunes in the community, bank in the community, buy locally and enhance our quality of life.
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1. Kathryn Kramer
3. I work in sales at ColorLink, Inc. - a RealD company. I also own Have Office Will Travel and I am a published author with 40 books published for Pocket, Dell, Kensington, etc. in various foreign languages.
4. How long have you lived in Boulder? I was born in Boulder and have lived here all my life, with the exception of two years when I was in my late 20s.
5. Representatives are elected to represent the people and this is not currently happening. I am concerned about several issues facing city council, i.e. TransitVillage; FasTrack; a proposed Convention Center; and affordable housing (for the middle class). I want to bring back “smart growth”
6. I am a third-generation Boulderite - born and raised in Boulder. I know the history of the area and have close ties to my home town. The past can be the key to a successful future. I have worked in the tech industry since 1980, (including Ball Aerospace, the National Center for Atmospheric Research and presently ColorLink, Inc.) know the importance of large businesses to the community. I also worked for Wonderland Hills Development Company (and Real Estate) and NCE - construction and community-planning companies - and know the importance of community planning. I am an entrepreneur and own my own business - Have Office Will Travel - and thus understand the problems and needs of small business owners. Additionally, I have worked for EUA Cogenex, which was an environmental engineering company that renovated and retrofitted buildings to be cost and energy efficient. Writing has put me in close contact with the public and emphasized to me the importance of being a “good will ambassador.”
7. In reading the Blue Ribbon Commission Update Presentation, I noted that among other issues, the aging of the Baby Boomers is listed as a major contributing factor (because Boulder currently has a larger share of boomers than does Colorado) affecting taxable spending and that it is hoped that the income demographic may offset age. One thing I think that can help avert this problem is by addressing the issue now and exploring incentives for businesses to employ older workers (who are often not only targeted for layoffs but also face age discrimination when looking for new jobs due to an increase in health insurance costs to businesses). It is a win/win situation because they can bring a wealth of experience to the workplace and those who are economically secure will spend (boomers when they were teens were the hub of the economy for many, many years and still like the finer things in life). Additionally, Boulder has many recreational, educational and cultural opportunities that will be attractive to retirees, and we should emphasize and advertise this.
8. The council has identified several long-term trends they say will threaten the city's ability to collect revenues sufficient to keep providing services at current levels. I believe that immediate steps should be taken to avert the problems looming in the future. This means tough decisions may have to be made - now before the problems threaten stability. It is projected that sales tax is insufficient and will not keep up with expenditures, and yet the city of Boulder is heavily dependant upon sales and use tax to fund its many programs and services. Just as with a personal budget, you can't spend more than you earn - there cannot be more outflow than input, which means that the city definitely needs to have a plan to increase revenue. More revenue is security for the future. Work to increase tourism. Get the word out via media about Boulder's assets. Attract Businesses to locate in Boulder. Increase incentives for businesses, and don't forget the entrepreneurs. Add broadband. Renovate/modernize our aging buildings/facilities and make them energy and cost efficient. Continue to accentuate the positive, such as our historic preservation and healthy lifestyle. We have been very successful with the Bolder Boulder and Boulder Bike race. We need to find other creative ways of attracting additional events to our area or starting new ones, such as the Scottish Festival held in Estes Park. Once the city has added to Boulder's income, they could set aside a “cumulative reserve fund” for any future problems/concerns.
9. More affordable housing for the people currently living or working here. However, Boulder can't house and give employment to everyone. Common sense on this issue has to be the rule of the day. Structure the taxes so that they do not cause a hardship on seniors or those on fixed incomes. This especially means giving a break to seniors as far as property taxes are concerned so as not to force them out of a house they have owned for many years. Boulder has a great many “boutique and trendy stores” that cater to the wealthy and university students. We need a discount store such as a WalMart that could be built at the Diagonal Plaza site. Target is getting pretty pricey lately.
10. I think the most important thing to bring to city council is an open mind and to be able to re-evaluate issues as new facts are revealed. Because I have an open mind and have listened to the concerns of citizens who have contacted me I am taking a second look at the following: FasTracks sounds like a good idea and “folks” have promised that it is the kind of measure that confers real benefits on a wide spectrum of Boulder residents and is a meaningful way to address congestion and pollution. Now, however, instead of a fast “electric” commuter train it appears that what is planned is a diesel train. The city's budget will be short, there will be an impact on the peace and serenity of surrounding neighborhoods and the city and county will be altered in many ways. Perhaps then FasTracks should go back to the drawing board. This also includes taking a second look at plans for Transit village. I believe more research should be done concerning the impact of all the people intended to be drawn into Boulder for affordable housing and jobs, people who do not currently work or live in Boulder. More people means a rise in crime, pollution, traffic and parking. I believe that a hard look should be taken at plans to build a convention center - particularly if the site chosen is to be in the downtown area.
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1. Ken Wilson
3. After 20 years in engineering and management, I founded a Boulder-based telecommunications consulting firm 9 years ago. Currently, I am phasing down the company and starting a new career in biology. I am a graduate student in Ecological and Evolutionary Biology at CU and employed as a research associate.
4. 12 years
5. My desire to help strengthen our economic health and vitality, promote renewable energy and conservation and improve community livability. I also became aware that while we have had an effective City Council recently, a large number of the City Council members were leaving and I thought it was important to replace them with good people.
6. I won the special election in July. I have been endorsed by the Sierra Club and the Boulder Outdoor Coalition. I have been endorsed by PLAN Boulder County, members of Council, County Commissioners, state legislators and our CU regent. I bring 30 years of experience in engineering and science to Council. I am also one of only two incumbents running for seven open seats so I can serve as an important bridge between the old and new Council. Please visit www.kenwilson.org for more details on my positions.
7. City Council should play an active role in the city's economy. The city should work with business leaders to help retain businesses in Boulder and attract new businesses to Boulder. I would like to see Boulder develop into a business-friendly city where Council and businesses consider themselves as partners in maintaining and improving the business environment. I helped start a software development business in 1977 on the East Coast. I worked as a manager in training at a small electrical manufacturing company, and I worked for AT&T in a variety of management positions. I know the importance of good relations with local government at all levels of business. The Economic Vitality initiative with its Business Incentive Program, Development and Redevelopment Assistance program and its Business Retention and Expansion programs (among others) need to be fully funded and developed. I am particularly interested in the Business Incentive Program. If we manage this program correctly, it will return more tax dollars than it spends. This program is a critical investment in Boulder's future. Boulder has become a hub for a number of different business areas such as organic foods, sale of low impact recreational equipment, and biotech. We should think about strategic ways to use our Business Incentive Program to attract more businesses into these and other strategic areas. One example of new development that we should foster, in conjunction with CU, is the redevelopment of the University Hill business district.
8. Community sustainability addresses the interrelationships of economy, our social fabric and our environment, forming a stable tripod. Virtually every policy issue in the city of Boulder impacts each of the three legs of the tripod. Community sustainability should continue to be a cornerstone of our city government's policy. In terms of my ideas for community sustainability, I would like to see Boulder take a leadership role in the use of renewable energy as part of our community sustainability effort. Within the city we should encourage the use of photovoltaic collectors and solar thermal hot water heating on residences and businesses. In the next few years Stirling Engine technology will bring a new and better alternative for solar energy to businesses and could be considered by the city for larger applications. We should also look to partner with rural areas, using their wind power, solar power and biofuel resources. Community sustainability also reminds us to look at the economic impact of an environmental policy. In the examples above, I believe the impact will be quite positive if Boulder is a leader in this area.
9. I would support affordable housing initiatives. I would support redevelopment planning that favors diverse housing stock. The inclusionary zoning program is a good, progressive way to increase permanently affordable housing. If it functions properly it will bring part of the service workforce into the city, reduce traffic and reduce the CO2 footprint. Inclusionary zoning should be focused in areas with good public transport and good walking access to services. It should also capture revenue for retail services that would otherwise be lost through people commuting out of the city. It is unclear as to whether inclusionary zoning is having the desired effect. At the appropriate time we need to evaluate the program and make changes if necessary if the program is not meeting its goals and objectives. There has been talk of putting fees on “Pop and Scrapes” to fund additional affordable housing. This is potentially a good idea. However, we need to consider the extra burden this would place on homeowners who want to improve their properties. I am interested in listening to those neighborhoods that proactively want to put sensitive limitations on “Pop and Scrapes” development in their neighborhoods, particularly where speculative development of “McMansions” is undermining the neighborhood character.
10. I would not raise and discuss non-critical issues that distract Council, prolong meetings and undermine public confidence in Council. I would work to prevent urban sprawl by supporting transit-oriented development and resisting efforts to expand the city outward.
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1. Larry Quilling
3. Sr. Program Director, New Products, Seagate Technology
4. 25 years
5. I am running for council with a firm belief in three main issues:
Protect, Conserve & Restore our Boulder Watershed: Plans exist which I have helped create that will keep water in our streams year-round, improve water quality, and reduce our need for trans-basin water from the west slope. 1) Implement WRAB proposals for increased in-stream flows for South & Middle Boulder Creeks. 2) Complete the program to mark all 4,000 city storm drains with waster water cautions. 3) Establish regular DOW River Watch water quality monitoring and reporting on Coal Creek, South & Middle Boulder Creeks, Bear Creek, and Goose Creek. 4) Initiate immediate discussions with the Eldorado Springs Water & Sanitation District to understand the effluent flow concerns for their new wastewater treatment plant.
Really Achieve Zero Waste: Boulder needs to adopt one-bin recycling and community composting zero-waste initiatives. The groundwork has been laid; I will drive to make it happen by finalizing the Eco-Cycle expansion site and expediting our planned 2017 adoption.
Transportation: Let's reduce our congestion and carbon footprint by synchronizing our traffic signals. San Jose, Calif., retimed traffic signals on its most heavily used intersections resulting in 31 percent fewer stops and improved travel times by 16 percent. Pollution emissions declined by 5 to 15 percent with 53.5 fewer tons of annual emissions. Boeing and Microsoft stagger start and release times of their Seattle area employees reducing peak congestion. We need to plan for the reality of personal automobiles in conjunction with mass transit.
6. As a Boulder resident for over 25 years, I have a good sense of the challenges and issues facing our city. I have volunteered 800 of my time this year alone as a watershed conservationist and advocate for youth through education and recreation programs. In efforts to better understand the human services needs of our community, I served on the City of Boulder Community Development Block Grant Board for three years. During this time I reviewed local non-profit capital improvement requests and submitted council recommendations for funding.
I am the private-sector candidate with the experience to lead. I have over 20 years multinational business experience in technical, financial, operational and managerial fields. Coupled with my volunteer endeavors, I have a good sense of the needs of our community and the experience to lead on Boulder City Council. My leadership and unequalled volunteerism will bring council focus and accountability, giving citizens more say how they're governed.
7. Boulder needs to attract and retain our businesses in order to stabilize our tax revenues. Stable revenues mean sustainable services; I will work to revitalize our city through partnership with businesses and non-profits. A convention center, tourism, and improved business parks are all important ingredients for success.
I support a new conference center for Boulder and it is long over due. Other communities such as Broomfield and Westminster are building and booking their centers while Boulder debates the location. Our opportunity to place a convention center near downtown is sadly closing, as many of the possible sites have been recently developed. I do not support the 13th and Canyon location for all the reasons stated by concerned citizens. How about building a business park or convention center in our new Transit Village where people can commute to work or convention events?
We must find value propositions important to employers that help attract and retain them in our community. In addition to the economic vitality grants, there are “in-kind” incentives and recognition awards that can be structured as part of our incentive plan. Discounted or free access to city services such as recreation centers, Boulder Reservoir for company functions, and access to meeting space are examples of in-kind services that should be expanded.
8. Boulder's success in creating a desirable place to live and work is also our greatest challenge. Our Open Space and growth restrictions have succeeded in pushing growth beyond our city/county limits and open space buffers into surrounding communities. We need to plan for the commuting population with improved road infrastructure and alternative transportation.
I am a strong proponent of residential and commercial renewable solar energy systems. Federal tax credits and city incentives are not enough to encourage widespread adoption. I recommend the City of Boulder negotiate volume discount contracts with solar system providers and that the city rebate program be tied to these contracted savings. The commercial benefits from such contracts could help attract and retain businesses through lowering their operating costs.
Boulder needs to move up our timetable for one-bin recycling and community composting zero waste initiatives. I know of no greater impact on environmental sustainability than increased recycling participation and keeping organics out of our landfills through community composting.
9. Economic vitality and continued support of affordable housing are the key issues for middle-class and lower-income residents. Our economic vitality plans have to allow for a large discount retailer to be established in Boulder to support the value needs of the middle and lower class. Discount products and services should not be denied to our lower income families just because some individuals do not like the social and business practices of these retailers. If you don't like the discount retailer, you don't have to shop there. Our current practices of setting aside affordable housing as a requirement for new development is crucial.
10. I believe we should build no village before it's time. Boulder should not over commit to a transit village based upon poorly conceived and inflated usage data from RTD. Platforms, buses and parking are important. The rest of the village development should be prioritized by usage patterns, adoption by commuters and other needs as they are understood. A rush to high-density housing and commercial areas will lead to more congestion, not less. As I stated earlier, I support building a business park or convention center in our new Transit Village where people can commute to work or convention events.
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1. Lisa Morzel
3. Senior research geologist specializing in volcanic terrains, U.S. Geological Survey
4. 30 years
5. Having served on City Council from 1995-2003, I have that experience as a consensus builder who will work toward common solutions that fit with a vision of a compact, sustainable, and inclusive community. I bring to this election the experience of someone who has worked with diverse groups achieving common goals with broad positive outcomes. Specific issues include the Climate Action Plan. Further, Boulder is approaching build-out and the actions that we implement today will have a profound effect on who and what Boulder will be in 20 years. The parcels of land that we choose to develop, redevelop, or not develop will have significant implications for future generations and will make the difference in terms of whether we have a thriving community for all residents or make choices that simply are not sustainable. Finally, the crosswalk at 34th and Valmont linking the San Juan del Centro community with Boulder was going to be removed by the city, forcing the residents, who depend on transit, to walk up to an additional 1,000 feet to get to and from their homes. It took three years to get the city to keep this vital crosswalk for that community and install it with the same standards that we have for crosswalks in more affluent parts of town. It should not have taken this long. I want to make sure the city's actions and policies are consistent; currently many are not.
6. Experience, institutional knowledge of the city and its residents, passion for Boulder, commitment to excellence. With seven open seats in this fall's election, it is important to have some council members with that experience. I also have been involved in Boulder for over 20 years on issues ranging from libraries, pedestrian safety, neighborhood changes and activity, the environment, recycling, education, children's needs. I was active in Boulder for years prior to being elected to City Council. I served eight years on the Council and have taken the past four years to reflect, rest, and see the city from both sides as a citizen and as an elected representative. I am known for my energy, knowledge and creativity in problem solving. At a time when there seems to be polarization on many fronts in Boulder whether those are in regard to Open Space issues, development, social services or how Boulder relates to the region, I have a track record for building consensus among diverse groups and resolving difficult problems. As research geologist who studies volcanoes, I can take the heat to lead Boulder into a sustainable 21st century!
7. Diversify our current revenue portfolio, examine efficiencies and focus on city structure/programs, encourage more private/volunteer partnerships, phase projects in over time, reprioritize community services. Diversify revenue stream by considering municipalization and energy sources, a head tax that focuses on providing specific needs like police and fire services, development excise tax triggered by size thresholds on pops and scrapes, augment property tax revenue, real estate transfer tax (if state law changed), and revenue sharing with other communities. I would also ensure our current economic vitality program has a direct benefit to Boulder. The Longmont Economic Gardening Initiative (LEGI), with $150,000, provides a critical level of service for local and startup businesses. LEGI provides peer counseling, access to research data, data and market analyses, plus competitive and industry intelligence. The initial interview, counseling, research data, and data analysis are free. Any local business can join and gain access to expenses databases and marketing tools normally only available to larger companies. I would also retain programs currently in place, but also continually meet with people to learn of concerns, issues, and suggestions. We need to streamline permitting processes achieving goals without undue burdens. Boulder can do this and more for local businesses.
8. The City Council can exert leadership roles and action with regard to our Climate Action Plan, transportation, recycling, reuse, composting and land use, and making sure all city actions and decisions reflect consideration of the social, economic and environmental impacts. We need to measure the impacts of the growth we have taken on to see what the positive benefits have been and the negative impacts. We need to ensure that we are delivering the level of services that our community requires whether those be having adequate water for the existing population, traffic congestion, safe crosswalks, adequate park and school facilities, or help for local businesses and the arts. We need to empower the lower and middle-income residents to ensure their access to education, libraries, recreation centers, human services, computers and housing are what they need to achieve their economic, social and environmental goals. Community gardens, water availability, clean air, healthy citizens with access to medical and dental care, and waste reduction are all part of being a sustainable community. The city can support these.
9. The middle-class and lower-income residents of Boulder provide the economic backbone and the needed social and ethnic diversity needed for a functioning sustainable community. We need to make sure we continue to support a diverse housing stock that is integrated throughout Boulder in neighborhoods that are safe, free from crime and have full-service amenities like parks, schools, shopping, libraries, crosswalks and access to transit. The city could do more with regard to making sure residents' concerns are promptly heard and satisfactorily addressed; more Spanish-speaking staff should be available in the city. Swift and immediate response and action by the city should occur with hate crimes, wage theft (which the Council has just addressed) and housing complaints. When I was on Council, $15,000 from the City Manager's fund was allocated for an attorney to represent residents in the Boulder Meadows mobile home park who had been evicted for questionable reasons. In 2001, more than 350 eviction notices were given to residents of the 640-home park. Having an attorney represent these residents caused this behavior by the management to cease. Perhaps a residents' board on par with our other boards should be considered. Programs that encourage more dialogue and diversity in our interrelationships could go a long way so that all get a better understanding of the other one's issues and every day challenges.
10. I am concerned with the discussion around a convention center downtown and the impacts that may have on an already vibrant and very successful Farmer's Market, Dushanbe Teahouse and City Park. I agree with former Councilmember Riggle: a convention center must be self-sustaining and revenue neutral. A previous feasibility study concluded a “successful” convention center requires close city-CU partnership, requires easy access by a spectrum of modes, requires a variety of lodging, and regardless of financial success, will cost the city upwards to hundreds thousands of dollars annually. That said, the public needs to be more involved and determine if they think this is a good idea. Better alternatives to downtown include 28th and Arapahoe at the shopping center associated with the Millennium Hotel and the Transit Village, to name two such sites that may be provide more synergy to surrounding areas such as 29th Street Mall, the University of Colorado, the Boulder Creek Path, and have better easier access without introducing more congestion. While the recently adopted Transit Village Plan puts in place a plan for a compact and potentially sustainable development that will be implemented over the next 15-20 years, I want to make sure transit is a key component. The future development needs to actually serve Boulder and its residents and not generate additional problems and burdens on our currently overstressed infrastructure, such as the need for more parks, water, traffic, schools, human services, and libraries to name a few.
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1. Macon Cowles
3. Environmental and civil rights lawyer. In the last ten years, I have also cofounded two businesses to reduce the energy use of large commercial, industrial and mixed use buildings.
4. 25 years plus three years in the 1970s.
5. 1) Protecting the environment, in particular, reducing Boulder's carbon footprint by implementing the Climate Action Plan, and reducing Boulder's dependence on electricity from coal plants; 2) Nurturing the economy; 3) Protecting the character of neighborhoods and enhancing the quality of redevelopment, and; 4) Making sure that the safety net is working in order to make life
better for people who are struggling. Parks, libraries, transportation and human services all need adequate funding. Stabilizing revenue at a level that will provide high quality of services is going to be a major challenge of the next Council. My five-year service on the PB has given me the experience to understand the importance of both stability and change in neighborhoods. People don't want their streets locked in time; but neither to do they want out of scale buildings and development to elbow into their streets. The process for public input with respect to city policies does not always work well. It takes too long; it tires people out, and it is expensive, frustrating the desire to participate in City decision-making. I will listen to people's concerns, and work for a more vital and effective way for their concerns to be reflected in City action.
6. I have extensive experience in the most important areas that the council deals with, including planning and development, economic vitality, environmental issues, social equity, open space and access to city government. As a lawyer I have been lead counsel in cases of regional and national importance, involving science and engineering, city planning, and social equity. In the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Litigation I was lead lawyer for the major environmental groups against Exxon in protecting the environment. I have challenged huge land development schemes that would alter the landscape and wipe out sensitive species. I have saved ancient redwoods from being turned into paneling. I helped to open the doors of opportunity for Hispanic workers at the Denver Mint. My experience in two businesses gives me a valuable perspective from which to implement Boulder's Climate Action Plan, and analyze the issues involved in whether the Xcel franchise to provide electricity and gas should be renovated or scrapped. On the Planning Board, I worked with all the major departments of the City. I know how to get things done, and how to evaluate the trade-offs that are made in decisions about how to spend public and private money wisely.
7. First, I would continue to fund the Economic Vitality Program that the City has adopted to implement the ideas of the Boulder Economic Council. This program has done much to nurture the economy during the past four years, focusing on business retention and expansion, assistance to businesses at cutting through red tape, and launching a business incentives program that has achieved some remarkable resulting retaining business that, without the program, might well have gone elsewhere. Second, I would explore in more depth the creation of a conference center (CC) in Boulder. It would provide a valuable supporting service to the federal labs, the University, non-profits and the arts community. The question of how the CC will be paid for is important. We have not identified revenue sources to pay for the capital cost of the CC. And I am not convinced that building the CC at 14th and Canyon would be sufficiently protective of the Farmers Market and other activities at this site which are successful at present. Finally, I would proceed with caution in spending anticipate sales tax receipts attributable to the redevelopment of 29th Street. The development needs to mature before to provide assurance that the retail sales tax base of the Boulder Valley Regional Center has been restored.
8. First, the City Council must understand that for the world to reduce its carbon by 80 percent by 2050 (as recommended by the IPCC), the U.S. has to decrease its carbon by 96 percent! Therefore, the City needs to do the following: Enact stringent building standards for new construction, remodels and renovations. Consider a menu of alternatives and incentives to get people out of their vehicles and into alternative modes; 28 percent of GHGs are attributable to transportation. Take over Xcel's role in providing energy to consumers in Boulder, or negotiate stringent reductions in the amount of CO2 from the generation of electricity furnished by Xcel. Either of these should include phasing out the purchase of electricity purchased by coal-fired plants that do not have carbon storage. Implement contracting procedures so that when the City makes purchases it will reward early adopters of CO2 reductions. Use local buying power to create markets for critical advanced technologies such as plug in hybrids.
9. I will support changes in land use that protect middle-class housing from being demolished and replaced with huge houses that only a millionaire could afford. I will support a reevaluation of, and a higher level of commitment to, the affordable-housing program so that it better serves lower-income residents. I will work for adequate funding for parks, libraries, transportation and human services-all of which are important to low and middle-income people in our community.
10. I would not support a flyover (grade separated interchange) at Arapahoe and Foothills.
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1. Matthew Appelbaum
3. Computer software architect/developer, currently self-employed
4. 31 years
5. The key issue is creating a more sustainable Boulder, and I think my long experience and leadership in a wide variety of civic activities can help me see the key interconnections among the natural, social, and economic environments upon which any sustainable future depends. More specifically, I want Boulder to be a leader in dealing with climate change by setting cutting-edge standards for energy efficiency in all new/redeveloped/sold residential and commercial buildings, and championing regional transportation (especially US-36 bus-rapid-transit) and growth-management initiatives. I want us to ensure that growth and redevelopment provide far more community housing, diversity and economic benefit, while minimizing public costs and impacts. I want to reinvigorate our affordable housing programs, do all we can to maintain some diversity in our community, and better protect neighborhood character by constraining the pops/scrapes and the inappropriately huge houses they become. And I want to help fashion a long-term, sustainable revenue future based on a more diverse and equitable tax structure and a vibrant economy. And I want us to consider more creative and innovative solutions to these and other challenging issues.
6. The long and varied experience noted above, including service on the city council, regional bodies like the Denver Regional Council of Governments (where I was a key creator of the first Metro Vision regional plan), the initial transportation committee that crafted our first multi-modal transportation master plan, several committees on affordable housing, the city's Parks Board, chairing PLAN-Boulder County, serving on the executive committee of the Sierra Club, current service on the city's Blue Ribbon Committee on Revenue Stabilization, and four years as a columnist on local affairs for the Camera. Of course along with experience and leadership, taking clear positions on controversial and complex issues, and making at least my fair share of mistakes in both decisions and style, comes some well-earned baggage - although I'd like to think I've learned much and can communicate across community lines, ask the hard questions, and respectfully and productively disagree. And voters aren't just choosing me over other candidates, but with others, since we need a team that can work together, offer varying perspectives, knowledge, and style, champion different issues, and fashion creative solutions. I think I have proven that I can add considerably to such a team, and I'm eager to get to work.
7. The long-term trends suggest structural problems with our revenue streams not sustaining our current levels of services. Components of some possible solutions include: diversifying away from dependency on volatile sales taxes as much as possible; reexamining development excise tax methodology and charges, and assessing the DET against pops and scrapes over certain size thresholds; increasing the pie by continuing our economic vitality program, selectively attracting more tourism and, if financially feasible, building a small conference center; targeting taxes/fees to those users who benefit from certain services; increasing flexibility and resiliency by earmarking funds only for capital projects and by increasing reserve funds; de-Brucing the city's property tax revenue stream; reauthorizing several sales taxes that will be expiring soon unless equally valuable substitutes can be found; examining new taxes and fees, including such controversial concepts as “head” taxes, some sort of transportation tax and/or expanded “carbon” tax; uncovering and reexamining “hidden” subsidies to user groups, age groups, or businesses; seriously considering regional revenue sharing; working with allies to allow local voters to impose a real estate transfer tax, and to create an equitable system of taxing mail-order/internet purchases; attracting some key, missing “value” retail merchants; doing a better job of prioritizing expenditures, with a goal of being able to fund key new initiatives and programs, especially when we can leverage our contributions. And, it is essential that we look at these techniques in a comprehensive manner, since there is obviously a limit to the total tax burden, and also try to ensure that they are applied equitably.
8. True “self-sufficiency” isn't realistic given both our reliance on products and services from outside Boulder, and our shared regional environment. But a far more sustainable Boulder is definitely attainable, and we must create long-term, flexible, and resilient strategies and understand that a sustainable community depends on the natural, social, and economic environments. The council can lead by example, set standards and a regulatory framework, create incentives, and provide regional - and perhaps national - leadership in a number of critical, interconnected areas, including: energy efficiency, green building, resource conservation, and reducing our carbon footprint;, regional transportation and improved mobility; growth management and ensuring we obtain key community benefits from growth and redevelopment; maintaining significant socio-economic diversity by reinvigorating our affordable housing programs and ensuring all citizens take part in decision-making and share in our success; creating long-term economic vitality that provides jobs and helps insulate us from volatile boom/bust cycles; continuing to preserve our Open Space and natural resources while providing quality recreational access; and stabilizing and diversifying our revenue base.
9. We need to at least maintain - and preferably improve - our current dwindling levels of socio-economic diversity, ensuring that we don't become a community of just the rich, very rich and poor, with a vanishing middle. That won't be easy given the extraordinary value of land and housing here, and the ever-growing availability of cheaper and (to many of the middle class we'd like to attract) more desirable housing in our region. We need to reinvigorate our affordable-housing programs, but while there are many ways to raise some additional funding (via improved development excise taxes and zoning regulations, for example), it will still be extremely difficult to create housing attractive to the “non-rich.” A diverse community also needs far more “value” and basic merchandising retail so citizens can meet their shopping needs locally, and while Boulder isn't about to annex cheap land or locate “big boxes” in inappropriate places, we can attract mid-sized stores and help facilitate the assemblage and necessary zoning for larger and more diversified outlets. Recreation, transportation, cultural and human services needs must also be targeted to attracting and retaining more diverse populations. And a diverse community can succeed only if all of our citizens are encouraged to take part in decision-making and all feel as if they will share in our successes.
10. This could be quite a long list, if we include such non-starters as selling Open Space, annexing everything in sight like most other fine Colorado communities, or ripping out bike lanes and paths to widen streets. But of those ideas that might be at least a bit more plausible, I would not: give up on affordable housing or our attempt to maintain diversity; abandon our multi-modal transportation strategies; reduce our Climate Action Plan efforts or let our innovative carbon tax concept get snuffed out; let our economic development efforts lead us to unsustainable growth; terminate our fledgling economic vitality program; return to the fortress-Boulder days when we were not a regional player; ignore the continuing impacts huge houses are having on neighborhood character; reduce protection of critical natural ecosystems or wildlife/riparian corridors; allow annexation of any portion of the Planning Reserve except in the most extraordinary case that provides exceptional benefit and has wide support; support new taxes that are not part of a comprehensive strategy that will help us attain a more sustainable revenue base; reduce funding to human service programs; or soften our protections for, and commitment to, human rights for all our citizens.
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1. Rob Smoke
3. Primarily, I provide caregiving to individuals with severe disability, mostly through an agency called Family Links located in Gunbarrel.
4. 21 years
5. I see a lot of short-term economic goals embraced by our present council that run counter to long-term human sustainability and quality-of-life values held by a broad spectrum of our community. I want to change that direction. When a city staff member presents a downtown convention facility as a “win/win” for the Farmers' Market and the rest of our city, my eyebrows shoot to the ceiling. As a matter of fact, pretty much any time you hear that “win/win” phrase used in dialogue about new development, there's a big loser somewhere. If we don't place values of human sustainability above short-term economic goals, we really are shooting ourselves, and not simply in the foot, but in what Woody Allen once described as “the chestal area.” Another indicator of what's wrong would be the plan for the new Transit Village - unanimously approved by council - where approximately 1 percent of the acreage has been devoted to green space in the form of two postage-stamp sized pocket parks. That kind of overbearing commitment to development looks especially suspect and most likely constitutes a “donation” of millions of dollars to a developer. That kind of mindset has to change even if it means overhauling our entire city government.
6. Quite simply, I'm an activist. I don't “go along to get along.” In 1998, when the city was considering a $150 million “TIF” boondoggle for the mall developer, I collected information on it and gathered a citizen's group to visit with council members and discuss the matter. We won our case, and today the city has a couple of million dollars in its annual budget that would not be there but for our efforts. I am also a committed environmentalist who walks the talk each and every day. In 1994 I created the bike share program at Naropa, which thrives to this day. I have been especially active the past five years as a member of the city's Human Relations Commission. I believe firmly in a diverse and inclusive community that does not demonize people for the difficult circumstances they sometimes must face either here or in another country. I have been a tireless advocate for social justice and accountability at all levels of government, but particularly in our local community. Recently, when the city manager attempted to stop the League of Women Voter's forum from being televised, I got very involved, speaking before council, talking to the press, and advocating firmly for reversal, and we will have that forum televised. An informed electorate is irreplaceable, and so are the local institutions that support that cause. I have a low-budget campaign - instead of having campaign buttons for everyone, I have one button everyone can share. A vote for Rob Smoke is a vote to create our future, not consume it - I ask for votes that we may pursue that goal together. Please tell a friend.
7. Firstly, economic stability is relative. We have incredible economic stability compared with the rest of humankind. That said, I think we need to look at both inflow and outflow. First off, our planning department operates on a budget that is several times the per capita national average while providing results that are at best questionable. I want a complete performance audit for that department, as well as other city departments as needed. If developers are reaping the benefits of hundreds of percentage point returns on their investments, our resident-funded planners should not be serving as their private consultants. Second, our endless pursuit of sales tax revenue has led to some abominable land-use decisions, and we need to think regionally on these issues. I do not support the spiraling pursuit of sales tax revenue. It's the financial equivalent of heroin addiction - you have to keep harming yourself to keep it up. Third, I do fundamentally support a head tax that would shift the burden of some of our road and service infrastructure costs to individual commuters using those services but not presently paying for them. I would propose a ballot initiative that exempts city residents and transit users. I find it unacceptable that individuals in our community have to pay tax on things like milk and canned tuna, while individuals commuting to work here get a free ride. I think a lot of significant work needs to be done in this area.
8. Sustainability is in the eye of the beholder. Firstly, I want us to work both locally and regionally to try and lay the groundwork for development that is a lot more sustainable than what we currently see along U.S. 36, within our region, and to a very significant degree, within our city as well. Two-car garages and postage stamp lawns have to be replaced with shared open space, shared transit and shared human concerns. Developers that sell “extra” thousands of square feet on new homes as “intelligent” investments have to be slowed down a bit with proper regulation. We also need to see better neighborhood self-determination, and that includes sharply graduated fees for pop-and-scrape development. A speculative investment and an incremental increase to the size of one's home to accommodate a growing family are radically different things and their differing impacts must be considered when reviewing cost structure. I want to provide incentives to socially conscious living choices, and disincentives to choices that are fundamentally less conscious and less supportive of a future we can all share.
9. Firstly, I think our current policies lead to gentrification, and that's well proven. You can't maintain a quality of life that isn't shared. I think our middle-class is being squeezed, and I think our lower-income residents are being pushed beyond the fringe. I have lost many friends in this community due to lack of affordable anything, let alone housing. I would like to see an affordable housing program that is not dependent on the “kindness” of developers that are otherwise making vast profits. I grew up in a housing development in NYC that provided living space to low- and middle-income families that was available at less than half the market rate with plenty of green space. I think there are ways to make that sort of project happen here, although I support doing it in a sensible and appropriate way and not with massive instant additions of thousands of units. I also support the creation of humane institutions and programs that support residents of all persuasions and economic background.
10. I oppose adding obscene congestion to the downtown area with a convention facility. Preserving the ambience and quality of the Farmers' Market and central park are also significant issues, so I will not approve a convention facility at that location. I also absolutely will not support programs with undocumentable results, such as our current “economic vitality incentives” program, which gives away checks to the wealthiest corporate interests in our community. I do not object to those interests being here; I do object to a program that essentially decorates the annual bottom line of some division manager, while we have seniors on fixed incomes paying property tax and perhaps choosing between heat and food in the middle of winter. I think that's a real insult to valued members of our community, and although I may be the only candidate to have expressed outrage over it, if elected, it will continue only over my dead body. Finally, I pledge to resign if I am ever caught saying to a neglected constituent, “If I answered every email, I'd be answering emails all day.” I consider it the job of a city council person to respond to every resident, not simply residents who happen to be wealthy or influential. That reflects my view of government and is the basis for my candidacy.
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1. Shawn Coleman
3. Sales and Finance Manager, Smooth Motors; Principal Clarinet, Wyoming Symphony
4. 5 years
5. I am running because Council needs a voice whose default position is practicality and the common good over ideology and activism. I also want to add balance to Council, to ensure the concerns of working-class people and young people are represented.
6. Voters should choose me with six other qualified candidates. Voters should look for candidates that can think independently, judge all cases on their merits and make decisions for the common good. We need a council that takes into consideration the broad context instead of just personal opinion. Voters should look for leadership qualities over litmus test issues and vote for a balanced board.
7. The approach to stabilizing Boulder's economy is two-fold. One side of the equation is investment in the economy to generate revenue. Particularly investing in the arts and tourism and bolstering job growth in the sectors that have wages that match our real estate market and local values, particularly, technology, and renewable-energy industries where we can be a real leader. On the other side is finding efficiency in delivery of municipal service. Eliminating redundancies, and of true import is budgetary flexibility between funds so that departments can pay for capital improvements and maintenance in cash as opposed to borrowing, which would greatly reduce the city's interest liability. This along with good budgetary priorities will help right our economic ship, but there will still probably be some tough choices ahead.
8. The keys to self-sufficiency are balance and diversity. We need to have a diverse selection of employment opportunities and housing stock, balanced with a full spectrum of public and private sector services. And we can get close to providing the needs of Boulder residents in Boulder, but the reality is we are not an island so we must work with our neighbors regionally, and the state as a whole to ensure that Colorado has a sustainable future. To this end this means working at the county and state levels to ensure that water rights for municipalities and agricultural uses are protected, that we are working for cleaner air, and a well maintained and functional statewide infrastructure for all modes of travel.
9. One area that we need to do better is in solving the affordability problem for particularly the middle class. The middle class by and large pays for our affordable-housing program yet cannot participate in the program. We need to use this tool better. We need to think of this as a community-building tool instead of low-income subsidized housing. The programs should be open to those who want to make a commitment to Boulder and should involve financial education so that even folks in the middle class can learn how to leverage their assets to afford their families' needs. Another issue is a broader range of shopping options so that our residents don't have to leave town to buy groceries or a toaster at a reasonable price. This reality is bad for residents because of the expense of having to provision out of town, and it's bad for Boulder, because we loose that tax revenue which would have gone to enhancing Boulder's quality of life.
10. I oppose municipalization of the public utility. While Xcel is not the best, they do provide reliable energy, quick recovery in emergencies, and you can buy 100 percent wind power through their windsource program, as I do. Further the expense of this new utility will be significant and unwise in light of the upcoming revenue shortfalls we already know about to just maintain our current level of municipal services. With tools like Amendment 37 on the state level (by the way Xcel's home state of Minnesota has even more stringent regulations for renewable energy) and our Carbon Action Plan here in Boulder, we are well on our way to adding more renewable energy to our grid without this expensive new undertaking.
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1. Susan Osborne
3. For the past eight years I've taught at the university. I teach housing policy, city planning history and energy and design. Prior to that, I was Boulder's first energy director, community development block grant administrator and long range planning director. I'm a city planner.
4. 42 years
5.I am running for a seat on city council because several issues I care about are not being adequately addressed by the current council. When this council allowed the demolition of the small 1895 house at 1802 Canyon, it demonstrated its ignorance of land-use planning, its lack of concern for historic preservation, and in a single vote made the community poorer and a developer richer. There is not a majority on Council pushing for park and trail maintenance, nor is there a majority willing to take up the most thorny land-use problems of our time. We need an honest evaluation of affordable housing programs and must have a dialogue about pop-ups, scrape-offs and house size.
6. My experience is strong. I teach housing policy at CU. I served 5 years on the Parks Board and am co-president of Historic Boulder. As the city's first energy director, I managed the first chapter of Boulder's effort toward sustainability. As long-range planning director, I directed the planning and construction of the Boulder Creek path, negotiated the annexation of North Boulder and wrote the city's mobile home and mixed use zoning. And finally, I listen, I am open, I appreciate honest public process - and abhor dishonest process and preconceived positions.
7. The university and the federal labs, as well as our private-sector employers, provide the engine for our local economy. The first two are less affected by downturns in the broader economy. Being vigilant partners with the university and the labs is critical. Their success supports our economic stability. The City's Economic Vitality Plan is focused on the private sector, and the retention and attraction of jobs compatible to our city. Employer targets are high-tech businesses, natural-food businesses and others that strengthen an existing core employment. We need to be concerned that we have sufficient diversity in our employment sector. And last, we are blessed with a myriad of small retailers that to me are the essence of Boulder. Promoting buying in Boulder and doing whatever we can to help small retailers succeed has enormous benefits financially (the government relies on the sales taxes they generate) and helps preserve the character of this place we love.
8. There is an important role for the city to play. The Climate Action Plan provides some resources to begin to affect behavior through education and example. Residential and commercial conservation is where this program begins. I think it is imperative that we begin to educate and subtly promote energy production by local reporting on renewable energy produced and non-renewable energy conserved. I'd wager that fewer than 5 percent of Boulderites realize that we are already producing significant electrical energy from the head in our water transmission system, and that we burn methane for heat in our wastewater treatment plant. There are great opportunities to organize energy production community-wide, and I'll be anxious to pursue these. From a regulatory perspective, either an inspection and rating at the point of sale or mandatory compliance with minimum energy efficiency at the point of sale, should be considered. Anytime a building permit is issued for work above a certain dollar amount, conservation upgrades should be required. But again, I think we should track and publicize energy savings (public and private), give awards and tours, and as a local government be the paradigm when it comes to energy efficiency. The citizens should expect no less.
9. My area of expertise is affordable housing; I teach housing policy at CU, served on a housing nonprofit and volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, and helped write the city's housing plan at the end of the 1990s. Affordable housing will be a focus for me on council. I am concerned that the kinds of housing acquired through Boulder's inclusionary zoning program are not suited to families. The sort of housing we acquire will determine the demographics of our future. I also believe the city regulations should be modified and simplified when affordable units are to be gained. I think the city should seriously consider a living wage ordinance, and be on the forefront of efforts to support the full integration of our Latino community.
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1. Susan Peterson
3. Manage international hi-tech marketing program for Cadence Design, a San Jose, Calif., based company. I sit in Boulder but work in cyberspace from my home office.
4. 12 years
5. I am running for City Council because I am so thankful for the hard work and great ideas that our forefathers put into making this such a great place to live, and I want to do my part to preserve that heritage. I want to be a part of “defining progress” in a way that keeps Boulder at the forefront of “doing the right thing” - things like slowing down population growth to preserve our quality of life; like making sure that future generations have access to independent, renewable energy resources; like implementing social programs that ensure that people of all walks of life can feel at home here. I'm concerned that in our rush to embrace somebody else's picture of prosperity, and in our fear of being different, we might inadvertently undo the hard work of previous generations who had the courage to make unique choices and to limit our growth. And I want to be remembered as somebody who stood up and said the things that needed to be said, even if it wasn't the most popular opinion of the day.
6. Well, first and foremost, I think you should vote for me if you love the same things I love about Boulder. I love our open space. I love our open-ness, and I love our connection to nature and each other. I want to make sure that we preserve our great quality of life, for our kids and their kids. I am not a politician, but have chosen to serve our community in elected office because I think it's a place where my education and life experience in management, renewable energy and community activism can be put to good use. I have a reputation for having the creativity to find inventive solutions, the courage to make tough decisions, and the experience and work ethic to implement both - and would like to use these qualities to stand up for the things that are important for our town's “livability,” now and into the future. Oh, yeah, and did I mention “chutzpah” (def: audacity; nerve) - it's the ingredient we need on City Council to accomplish bigger things than we thought we could - and it's a quality that I think I can bring to Council.
7. The Blue Ribbon Commission on Revenue Stability's data shows that although our sales taxes revenue took a dive when Flatirons opened and Crossroads closed, we've recovered to the point that 2007 income will be higher than before the decline (over $80 million), and is growing. So first of all, I would do my best to continue this trend and would advocate that we add some lower-cost retailers to town, to keep our tax revenue from “going over the hill.” Moving forward, as a marketing executive, I know that the most ineffective market position one can take is to try to be “all things to all people.” Thus, I'd like to see a definitive plan to define our Target Market - the specific types of businesses we want to attract, grow or retain in Boulder. Our current “Target Market” consists primarily of the universities, the sciences (including some hi-tech), outdoor products, natural products, retail, tourism and creative arts. New market opportunities that we might consider would be renewable energy and businesses that capitalize on the Internet economy. Let's figure out what it takes to grow and retain these specific types of business here, in a way that we can benefit from their success.
8. Well, ask any sustainable farmer what the most important component to sustainability is and he/she'll tell you, “carrying capacity.” Carrying Capacity is broadly defined as the number of animals or amount of crops that you can sustain on a given piece of property without degrading the ability of that land to sustain a similar population now and into the future. So, the number one role that City Council should play in keeping (making?) our town more sustainable is to get back to the slow-growth policies that ensure that we don't exceed our “Carrying Capacity.” Otherwise, the impacts on traffic, pollution, noise, congestion and over-use will degrade the value of our quality of life that drew us all here in the first place. The next most important thing, especially for the next few generations, is access to clean, cheap, renewable energy throughout the city. In my job, I travel to places like Bangalore, India, and Bucharest, Romania - exploding economies with a desire for the same conveniences using the same amount of energy that we do - except with a LOT more people. I know that energy will be the scarcest resource in my son's lifetime. How great would it be if this Council took the steps toward creating an energy independent town, sourced from clean renewable sources? I can't imagine a more valuable or sustainable legacy for us to leave. Third is water. You just can't have local access to food without local agriculture - and on this high-plains desert in which we live, preserving and prioritizing agricultural access to water is another area in which Council can play a huge role.
9. I am particularly concerned that our “critical care” workers (hospital and senior care-givers, fire, police, teachers, etc.) find it difficult to live in our town. The Inclusionary Policy, which is supposed to ensure that 20 percent of all new development is “affordable,” should only be considered as one component in a more comprehensive plan for adding more affordable units to our town's inventory. In addition to stricter implementation of the Inclusionary Policy (current numbers show that developers are planning for building less than 5 percent affordable capacity in new developments), we need to find ways to add current properties to the permanently affordable market. Options for building the economic assistance to acquire these properties could include “Good Neighbor Assessments” on all property improvements above a certain size, or an additional property tax on homes outside of the affordable range to fund affordable housing. I also feel very strongly that a critical component to making Boulder affordable is making sure that we encourage a living wage). The Living Wage for a single person in Boulder is just under $10 per hour, and is about $40,000 per year for a couple with one child. I am concerned that addressing affordable housing without raising the percentage of residents who have a reasonable level of income will result in an affordable housing goal that is impossible to meet.
10. Well, I think I've made it pretty clear, above, that I am not in favor of hi-density growth, what my husband calls “urban-squish,” especially to the level that we have experienced lately. It creates too great a burden on our eco-system, makes it impossible to meet our Climate Action Goals, and in general, destroys the quality of life that we hope to pass onto our children. Thus, I would not support any initiatives that would contribute to this trend.
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1. Tom Riley
3. Director of residential, vocational, educational services for adults with physical and cognitive disabilities. I work at Imagine! (formally known as the Developmental Disabilities Center)
4. 10 years
5. I want to support the people and organizations that care about Boulder's future. For the last decade, my life's passion and work has been providing residential, educational and vocational services for adults with disabilities. The money received to do this work is from a Medicaid waiver program that provides money for disabled adults to live the fullest life possible. This money comes from what is called “comprehensive funding.” And comprehensive in this context means EVERYTHING. This means that our programs provide and support a person in every conceivable detail of their life. It is my role to ensure that the funding provided goes to achieving the goals of our clients. In order to do this, I must synthesize the hopes and dreams and desires and interests of my clients and their families. Toward the actual achievement of each person's goals I must provide supports and services that achieve the outcomes that show actual progress toward achieving what we say we will do for each client. My role has allowed me to hear the dreams and interests of my clients and do everything that we can to make these dreams represent reality. And, of course, all of this is done with a limited budget. It is with this experience that I hope to become a city council person, an experience that has allowed me the skills needed to do a lot with a little, to come up with creative and innovative plans and to put into action practical solutions.
6. My practical and matter-of-fact attitude allows me to say what goes unsaid at times. I am not afraid of being the only one in the room who disagrees with everyone else. If the emperor is naked, I'll be the one to yell, “The dude's nude!” In making decisions, I listen to what others have to say about the issue, and I do my own research. I will make informed decisions. I make decisions based on an intelligent exchange of ideas and examining viable options. I will make balanced decisions when the options are limited and the tough decisions need to be made. I do not believe in government by busybody.
7. The cuts that Boulder had to make as a result of the not-so-long-ago economic downturn and our shrinking budget forced Boulder to cut services. Boulder learned some much needed discipline. Our work is not done, though. Boulder must continue with the effort to create efficiencies in city government and spend within our means. Our competitive advantage is that we have a rich marketplace: we have location - mountains and open space, cultural opportunities and a bounty of quality retail. We have a niche. As the cities around us grow and become overcrowded, we are positioned to be the destination spot for the entire region for getting away from “it all.” Our most serious weakness is that Boulder does not seem to be as supportive of our commerce as it should. Our rents are high, our zoning rules are onerous, our roads seem always under construction, our parking policies seem to give tickets to the visitors who come to spend their money here, we seem to lack creativity at times (29th Street Mall).
8. If this were really the goal than we should all join the NRA and hunt deer. Boulder, despite the joke, is not an island. We need to provide accessible and affordable housing for the middle class. Working families and individuals need to be able to live in our fine city. If we continue to fail to act to maintain and create affordable housing for our working citizens in the middle-income, we will become an island for the rich. We need diversity in our socio-economics to keep Boulder healthy and sustainable.
9. Increase affordable housing units by creating interest in buying in and not buying out of developing affordable units. Boulder has hurt itself by allowing developers to buy their way out of developing affordable housing. We need about 4,000 units to meet Boulder's current goal. That means 40,000 more new units must be built to get the 4,000 affordable units. Or, somehow our local housing programs Thistle or Boulder Housing Partners and others, will somehow have to acquire 4,000 of our current housing stock or almost a billion dollars worth of housing. This is not going to happen. If a resident buys an affordable housing unit, I suggest that a 3 percent commission go to the developer for the life of the unit or until a prescribe profit is returned, 3 percent to the Realtor or housing program (Thistle et al.), 3 percent to the loan maker and 3 percent to the city housing program. This way the developer has the incentive to buy into affordable housing instead of buying out of it - the developer will receive dividends for years after the project is completed. Realtors who normally get a 6 percent commission would settle for half of that, given that the turnover of residents would be quickly filled. Local banks would provide the loans given that they would attract future customers, and the city would have the revenue for a sustainable and self-sufficient housing program.
10. I will not allow our locally owned and operated business to be squeezed out of Boulder. I propose property tax rebates for landlords who rent to locally owned businesses. I oppose government by busybody. I will not make decisions based solely on the interests of a small group or a vocal individual. The idea that Community is a three-legged stool is an important concept. Economic, Social and Environmental are, indeed, the legs that allow our community stability to stand up and provide us a place to sit in community. If we lose site of any area, our community loses its balance and ground to stand on. We should make policy based on the idea that every policy has an economic, social and environmental effect on our community. Every decision affects multiple areas of our community. Boulder should engage in Integrated Decision Making; housing, transit, stable revenue, environment, business climate, essential services and open space are interconnected. I believe we should tie them together when making decisions. Integrated decisions have more power to affect lasting and positive change. For example, tie development rights to energy efficiency, affordable housing and public transit. Affordable housing near public transit will lessen environmental impacts. Working families and individuals will have shorter commutes, business can retain employees, families will spend more time together, and future generations will be prepared to promote Boulder's values of community, livability, sustainability, education, recreation and renewable resources.
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1. Alan O'Hashi
3. Self employed - I provide cultural competency and diversity training for a wide variety of clients such as law enforcement, housing providers, youth serving agencies, schools, violence against women prevention groups. Lately, I mostly work with community based media producers, organizations, and socially-responsible businesses to develop their content via the written word, electronic and new media, the visual and performing arts in a culturally competent manner. I'm what's commonly called a niche producer.
4. 12 years
5. A need for common-sense approaches and my informed, yet fresh look at the issues and existing solutions. We need to keep the city government open and accessible, especially for underserved and marginalized citizens. We need to focus on supporting our economic and community development, as well as creating sustainable human and physical environments. I'm not beholden to any special interests. I have only the community at heart.
6. I'm hoping to bring a fresh perspective and common sense to City Council. With the big projects that Boulder has coming up, we need leaders with experience in city government and who know how to work with people from diverse backgrounds. I can find solutions that are the right fit for Boulder based on my wide-ranging experience and knowledge in diverse communities and across an ideological spectrum. I'm a hands-on guy and ready to roll up my sleeves. Over the years, I've been appointed to a number of different yet complementary roles in city government; I sat on the Planning Board for five years during which time I was a member of the City Council Housing Committee, the liaison to the Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board, and liaison to the Human Services Plan Update Community Sustainability Committee. I also served five years on the city Human Relations Commission. I've also been part of community television study groups.
7. I favor creating an economic base driven by employees who earn enough money to live in Boulder, coupled with affordable housing. Let's help businesses with primary workers who create dollar turnover in the retail and service sectors of Boulder, making it our goal to turn over every dollar seven times before it leaves the city. Let's expand cluster initiatives, focusing on renewable energy and green building, biosciences, and outdoor and sports industries, for example. The effectiveness of such incentives would show in increased, revenues, and jobs. The city economic vitality incentives should be a part of an overall funding package that leverages private investment. There are other incentives that don't cost money, but save money that can be applied through the development process, such as those that encourage alternative transportation modes.
8. Accessible Government - Make city government available to underserved and marginalized citizens. One vehicle should be “new” media. We can easily provide citizens with real-time information and by making city officials personable and approachable.
Sustainable Economic and Community Development - Let's encourage a diversified economy that helps both for-profit and nonprofit businesses grow while identifying promising and compatible entrepreneurial opportunities to incubate from within.
Interwoven and Balanced Human and Physical Environments - Continue supporting Boulder's progressive environmental policies such as the Carbon tax and open space acquisition. Let's encourage alternative energy and transportation and support Inclusionary Zoning and higher density building plans that provide sustainable design.
9. One of the first things is to continue to aggressively pursue affordable housing. I favor the Inclusionary Zoning program. I support mixing affordable housing into our developments, as well as diverse higher-density housing where it makes sense. Let's have a broad-based community approach that coordinates multiple services. Let's create an environment that increases housing supply to reduce prices. My personal experience lately has to do with housing for the elderly. There is a huge shortage of independent and assisted-living homes for the elderly. As Boulder residents age, there needs to be an evaluation of how the aging population will fit into Boulder. Bottom line question is: “How do we improve the chances that a people who work in Boulder live in any new housing stock?” There are various iterations of the affordable-housing program. I happen to know a few years ago when I was on the planning board, the city wrote off hundreds of affordable units because the program supposedly wasn't working right. I favor taking a new look at how the affordable-housing program can be improved based on the past history.
10. I will oppose putting a conference center in the wrong spot. Let's be sure that it is constructed to minimize the impacts on the community and maximize the benefits of visitors coming to town. I will oppose an unsustainable build out of the transit village. We need a development that is inviting, inclusive and not just a hub where out-commuters live.
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1. Nabil Karkamaz
3. Small Business owner of former restaurants (Nabil's, Shish Kabob & Lattakia); consulting engineer; currently department manager at Boulder Home Depot.
4. More than 20 years.
5. To strongly support local small business community, to promote alternative transportation and alternative energy, to support our open space and environmental planning, to support the affordable-housing program, to improve the relationship between the city and CU and to support neighborhood livability.
6. I have lived in Boulder for more than 20 years, and I started being involved in city politics more than 15 years ago. Previously, I ran for city Council in 2001, 2003 and 2005. I served on the Boulder Downtown Management Commission (DMC), and currently (for past two Years) I am serving on the Immigration Advisory Committee. Also, I contributed so many hours as a volunteer for my city and Boulder County. I am highly educated, and I'm well known in my community as a business owner and in person as a very friendly, logical, practical, energetic and caring person for all our citizens.
7. The first thing I will do is work closely with the Chamber of Commerce, the Economic Vitality program and the Blue Ribbon Commission to find ways to attract and retain businesses in our city and to increase our sales tax revenue in order to afford maintaining the city's current level of services. Boulder has a history of being unfriendly to businesses. In order to change that image we must make the rules and the regulations friendlier to the business community, including getting faster permits for new business, and speeding the processes for getting licenses for remodeling. I do believe the Chamber of Commerce and Economic Vitality Program have played excellent roles for retaining and attracting new businesses, and one way to attract small local businesses that are vital to our economy is to give incentives to small businesses. I am a big supporter of the business-incentive programs that were created in our city. Being a small business owner for a long time in Boulder, I have the knowledge and the experience on how to attract new businesses and how to increase our sales tax revenue.
8. The city can play a big role by being friendly to the business community, attracting diverse businesses, small and medium sized; building a conference center; improving our city recreation; attracting new visitors; hosting all types of events; working closely with CU; marketing the beauty of our city open space, our hospitality and downtown mall; creating a visitor center run by the city; improving our streets, our sidewalks and bike paths; partnering with the business community, increasing the number of the signs on all entry corridors for the city in deferent languages. By doing that, we can increase our sales tax revenue, and we can be a self-sufficient community.
9. I will increase the funding for human services, put the federal grant and the city funding to build affordable housing and create a program to train both middle-class and lower-income residents to get better training to find better paying jobs. Finally, I will vote to increase the minimum living wage.
10. I oppose increasing taxes for our citizen's properties and businesses, decreasing funding for the OSMP, cutting services for both middle-class and lower-income people, cutting library hours, being not friendly to our business community. In general, I oppose cutting any essential services to our community or any roles and regulation that affect our citizens, our way of life, our businesses, and our environmental community.
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1. Philip J. Bradley
3. Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science
4. 23 years
5. The need for a more fiscally conservative voice on council. The communities desire to have a person on council that will listen to their issues, and to represent the younger members of the community.
6. As a Boulder native I will act vs. putting together study groups and feasibility reports. I will also have a no B.S. policy both during meetings and when talking with the community. I will also bring common sense to the council and work to open local government up to the people.
7. Addressing this issue I will focus on our tourism, business, and industrial sectors. These areas provide our tax base. The need for retention and generation is critical if we want to continue to protect our environment. I will address this by reducing hurtles to development of outdated office and industrial spaces. If we want high tech industries we need to house them. Improvements of our existing infrastructure, e.g. fixing damaged roads, sewers etc., and always promoting green economic growth.
8. The role that the city can take to make this happen is to quit meddling in the day to day business of the people. Council needs to act as an enabler. We need to enable people to have solar options on their roofs if they want. We need to enable businesses to prosper by reducing hurtles to re-development and modernization.
9. I will continue to work with the community and the non-profits on producing more affordable housing. I will work to make sure that the economy is healthy and can provide a diverse job base. I will also re-examine buy downs for the affordable housing programs.
10. I will not let our arts community become a line item in a budget that is to be cut. I will not sell our water rights away to developers in eastern Colorado. I will not let our open spaces and parks fall into disrepair. I will not be a voice on council that can be bought. I will not ignore the neighborhoods. And I will not let my fellow council members treat any person with an issue poorly.
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