Important Friday reading, borrowed from the David White for Mayor website. There’ll be much more to discuss about antidotes to cliquish, fix-is-in Gahanism, but these surely are the most important points for those of us in the Resistance.
STOP! Deception, Dishonesty & Bullying
For over two decades, I have been an active, respectful and supportive member of my party’s leadership and platforms. However, it appears that here in New Albany, a few of our Democratic Party leaders have lost their guide star, lost the stewardship of public trust and abandoned the principles once held so closely. There was a time I clearly remember the core Democratic Party values were truth, integrity, inclusion, and helping the most vulnerable. In this city, under this mayor and his clique of cronies, these values have been replaced by deception and bullying, class warfare, and greed.
Unlike Mayor Gahan, I won’t pretend that homelessness or housing insecurity isn’t a problem in our city. As Mayor, I will develop a sensible plan for housing our most vulnerable neighbors, and I will do so with a new executive director of the housing authority. I won’t demolish public housing without a 1 for 1 replacement plan. Further, I would never turn down a $12 million federal grant, as Mayor Gahan did – a grant that could have helped us modernize our public housing for years to come.
As mayor, I will be transparent about funding used for major projects and development. Conversely, Mayor Gahan continues to take payments from every contractor he’s hired for city projects. Between city contractors and appointees, Mayor Gahan has taken over $200,000. Instead of reducing cost on city projects, he frivolously spends taxpayer money, then takes payments for his personal re-election campaign. Question: Why does he need so much money?
I am all for progress, but not if the people of New Albany stop being Priority ONE. It shouldn’t be projects over people, but instead People First! My administration will engage in smart and strategic growth that actually makes sense for New Albany. I pledge to not accept any donations from contractors hired by or in consideration for business with the City.
Additionally, the State Board of Accounts continues to find inaccurate and improper accounting practices and this administration refuses to give a full disclosure of debt.
STOP! Feuding Between City And County
As Mayor, I pledge to encourage cooperation between city and county. Today, I stand before you at your city-county building. Built in 1963, it is a testament to the unity that once existed between the two – something our hometown was lauded for. Try to imagine that in light of today’s petty bickering between Mayor Gahan and the Floyd County government! Why would the city spend an additional $15 million on a new city hall? Simply because Mayor Gahan refuses to coexist.
We have a great story as a city. That story needs to be told often, professionally, and broadly. Additionally, we must consider neighboring communities and businesses as collaborative friends – not competitors.
As Mayor, I will take the lead and change the perception of New Albany as a regional partner.
- It is great place to live and work.
- We are a viable center of global commerce.
- Join forces with other communities and businesses in our region to accelerate our population growth.
- Collaborate for a ‘win-win” outcome of attracting diverse talent.
It is time to aggressively market and promote New Albany. Our city needs a bold, unified, and passionate voice encouraging others to move and live here.
STOP! Growing Debt
Driving around this city you will find expensive, “shiny projects” that Mayor Gahan has pushed upon us while creating over $300 million of debt over the last seven years. He calls this economic development and quality of life improvements. Question: When people work 40 hours a week and still go home to poverty and debt, how is that economic development and quality of life improvement?
- Spent $20 million for a swimming pool that’s open 70 days a year, loses money and most cannot afford.
- Spent $1 million for a dog park, knowingly and disrespectfully built on a Native American burial ground.
- Gave $3 million to Summit Springs, a private developer for a hotel, but he was in a lawsuit against them.
- Spent $4 million for two-ways streets still dangerous because the Speck Plan was not followed.
The list of debts goes on and on. . .
He has swiped the city “credit card” (Tax Increment Financing, or TIF) to create these projects, which in turn give millions of dollars to private contractors. Every one of these “shiny projects” has come at a price, and specifically at a price to you (taxes and utility rates).
This is an opportunity for the citizens of New Albany to gain your city back. That’s why I am asking each and every one of you to do your part. The last mayoral primary was decided by 3,400 people out of a residency of 38,000.
The time has come for change and that change can start with you! It is time to fire Mayor Gahan and put the People First.