MANAGING THE PEOPLE’S MONEY
I am a conservative. I believe our city should be managed in a conservative and accountable manner. We cannot put the incredible community that we have built at risk for short term gains. As someone who works with individuals and small businesses to keep their finances in order, I will continue to preserve our “rainy day” fund. We need a strong buffer against economic downturns that lower tax revenues or other unexpected declines in our finances.
I commit to never vote for a tax increase on the residents of Johns Creek. Far too many politicians run for office with promises of never raising taxes yet somehow our taxes continue to go up. I will speak bluntly with citizens and not engage in political word games to deceive voters. A “fee” increase is a tax increase – I will oppose all tax and “fee” increases on the residents of Johns Creek.
I believe we should always look for ways to decrease the city budget while not reducing the services provided to citizens. This requires constant oversight of city departments and expenses to ensure that all budget items are necessary spending today as they were when implemented. Many local governments grow out of control by a lack of oversight of previously approved expenditures that may no longer be needed. I will always seek out the many great uses of technology that can streamline our city government and cut costs.
"Once we give up our valuable green space, we can never get it back."
PUBLIC PARKS, GREEN SPACE, QUALITY OF LIFE
Public parks and green space are an important part of our community. I will take into consideration the long term consequences of future zonings to ensure we maintain the green space needed to keep Johns Creek great! Once we give up our valuable green space, we can never get it back. This is a mistake that I have seen in many growing communities and I am determined to prevent the same from happening here.
PERMANENT BAN ON NEW APARTMENTS
As traffic continues to worsen, we must find solutions that can be implemented by the City Council. We don’t need additional high-priced consultants to “study” our traffic to know that we cannot continue down the same path and expect our traffic to improve. Todd proposes a permanent ban on all the future low-end apartment complexes that already fill our community.
Burkhalter stated, “The impact of bringing more high-density, low-income apartment complexes would be devastating to this community.” He continued, “It’s time we actually do something to prevent this rather than continued talk with no action. Let’s enact a permanent ban that cannot be easily overturned by future council members and resolve this issue!”
Placing a permanent ban on new apartment communities will not only improve traffic, it will also reduce crime, and prevent our first responders from being overloaded. Additionally, it will force current apartment companies to improve and renovate as complexes become dated and rundown. This prevents apartment owners from simply moving down the street to build new developments, leaving the old to become low-end and unsightly developments.
Johns Creek has many incredible first responders that look out for each of us every day. I will do everything in my power to support these individuals and the work they do for us. Our local public safety resources should be the best in the state and have the state of the art equipment needed to do their jobs efficiently and safely.
Johns Creek was recently named the safest city in the State of Georgia. This is something to be proud of. I will do everything in my power to preserve this level of safety and work to continually improve the safety of our community.
NEW CITY CENTER “THE DISTRICT” & LOCAL JOB GROWTH
The city is currently considering a privately funded city center known as The District. This could be a great resource for our residents. If managed correctly, with a proper master plan, I believe this could be a phenomenal “downtown” for the residents of Johns Creek. Currently, many residents are spending money outside our city at developments like The Avalon and others that offer restaurants and shopping. I would rather those dollars spent here in Johns Creek with our local businesses. This would also add many local jobs that will reduce the long commute that many residents make on a daily basis.
Along the same lines, we currently have multiple large commercial properties that are already developed yet sit vacant or with low-occupancy rates. These properties could be redeveloped for new tenants. This will increase our much needed commercial tax base while maintaining the same geographic footprint in our community. I will work to encourage businesses outside of our city to relocate into these already available spaces. Keeping taxes low and Johns Creek a desirable place to do business is a strong incentive.
ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY OF OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS
I support open and transparent government that allows strict oversight by citizens and independent watchdog groups that will keep our council honest and trustworthy.
TRAFFIC & TRANSPORTATION
Being an exceptional city to call home has its drawbacks. Most noteworthy, the traffic this brings to our community. We must work to control and improve our traffic gridlock through careful planning and conservative zoning decisions. We cannot allow uncontrolled growth that contributes to our growing traffic problems. I will make each zoning decision with careful consideration of our transportation issues.
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