Sunday, October 2, 2011

Duwnoody Election 2011

And, they're off!
Campaign signs and bumper stickers are popping up like mushrooms and brief campaign bios are showing up in newspapers online.

Yesterday I sent out the following email to all candidates in our city's contested races to see if they would offer some deeper insights into their philosophy of local government and vision for Dunwoody.  As I promised, whatever responses arrive will be posted without editing or editorial comment.

Let's see what happens!

Tonight, I'm headed to the DHA meeting to hear the knock-down-drag-out civilized discussion over the Parks Bonds up for a vote in November.  I'm composing my own epistle on that saga for a future post.  Until then I'm packing a snack, a bottle of wine, stadium seat, and maybe a pillow and toothbrush, depending on how much this gets drawn out.

Ladies and Gentlemen

I’m writing to you today to invite you to participate in an online Q&A on the Dunwoody Working Girl blog.

At the end of this email, ... I’ve assembled some questions regarding your vision of City government and your ideas of your place in it that are generally not covered by the local media. This invitation is going out to all candidates in contested races for the upcoming Dunwoody city election.

Any answers you choose to give will be posted on the blog, in their own dedicated post, in their entirety, unedited. (I’m not even running a spell-check!) Aside from some formatting, what you choose to say is what gets broadcast to the world.

This isn’t an “official” forum hosted by any group, HOA, the Chamber of Commerce, etc. I write a blog with a perspective on local business – citizens making a living. I am happy to provide a forum to each and every one of you to address questions and concerns from this perspective. I’ll post replies in the order that I receive them, as soon as they arrive. I am also planning a banner on the blog that will link to everyone’s official campaign site (or blog, etc). Feel free to include a mug shot to include with your responses if you wish.

Thank you in advance for your consideration and I look forward to learning more about each of your perspectives both online and in the upcoming candidate forums.

1) What one qualification do you have for elected office that exceeds those of your opponents?

2) The City’s Economic Development Department’s stated purpose is “The City of Dunwoody Economic Development Director is responsible for leading efforts to retain, expand and attract businesses that support a broad array of employment opportunities; strategically grow its knowledge-based economy; and expand the City’s tax base.” What should be this department’s next priority task to accomplish this purpose?

3) What was the City’s best business decision to date? (Any level or department, since operations started.)

4) What was one business decision made by the City (at any level, since operations started) that should not have been made? If you were given the chance, what would you have recommended be done differently?

5) As a member of City Council, you will be able to appoint or recommend members of various commissions. Besides an interest in the subject, and a desire to serve, what qualifications do you want to see in a potential commission member?

6) Which City department or commission (besides the Police) is the most critically important in developing the future of Dunwoody?

7) Which City department or commission do you feel is underserved and needs more attention in terms of funding and other resources (including personnel)?

8) In what ways should the City and Chamber of Commerce (or any other private entity) collaborate and in what ways should they be working separately to grow the City’s economic base?

9) Elected officials are constantly contacted with requests to have specific issues addressed by local citizens. If elected, how will you prioritize what issues get on the Council agenda, what will get further private discussion, and what will be tabled?

10) Open Mike Question: Make any statement you like on what issue or action will be most important to you as an elected official.

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