Questions from the Covington-Newton County Chamber of Commerce:
Q: The City has been reviewing the current sign ordinance. What are your thoughts on the existing and proposed ordinance and why?
A: Current Ordinance:
The Problems that I see with the existing ordinance are that it overregulates various types of temporary and permanent signs. Some examples are inflatables, streamers, and even advertising on benches that are on private property, for instance Kroger in Newton Plaza.
The Proposed sign ordinance has yet to be voted on. It is a negotiated effort involving elected officials, administrative staff, legal counsel, and other local committee and community members. I believe that it is a version that manages sign and/or advertising clutter while it does not work/hurt business owners who are earnestly trying to promote their business ventures during these most difficult economic times. Though there may be regulations on the types and numbers of signs permitted it allows for an adequate variation of permitted signs, such as building mounted and yard signs.
Q: What role do you see the Covington/Newton Chamber playing in your administration?
A: I see the chamber to continue being a major player in attracting and promoting economic development throughout the community involving existing and new industry and business interests.
Q: There has been a lot of discussion regarding the film and TV industry in Covington. Do you believe it is a positive or negative impact for Covington and what role do you see the City playing in it to support your opinion?
A: I believe the film industry is a positive element in Covington/Newton County. Given the number of films (commercials, television series, movies, etc.) that have been filmed in Covington/Newton County over the last thirty or more years our role in the film industry has become a part of our character and is an extremely key element in our community as a tourist destination.
Questions from The Covington News:
Q: What makes you qualified to essentially be a board member for an organization with 300 employees, a $120 million budget and several thousand customers?
A: Aside from the basic qualifications of which I exceed, for the past four years I have been a conservative voice and a good steward of the public monies and trust. In what are the toughest economic times since the Great Depression, I have worked diligently to try to keep costs down to our customers while maintaining a high standard of excellence in our services that we provide
Q: Would you describe yourself as conservative or liberal/progressive? In either case, why and what does that label mean to you as it applies to city government?
A: I consider myself conservative. To me being conservative means that I work hard every day, not only on city council, but also in my personal business and at home. I work hard every day to be fiscally responsible with the resources at hand, to not be wasteful in my spending, and to get the most benefit out of the resources that are available to us. I support training, education, and advances in technology to make our city employees more productive and better equipped to serve our customers/citizens.
Q: If you had to choose a single thing, what is the one thing that you plan to accomplish during your four-year term?
A: I plan to continue to foster/work for improved economic development and a stronger local economy.
Q: What have you done personally to make the city a better place during your term? Please choose something that you worked on personally; do not cite general council or city efforts/accomplishments.
A: For almost three years I have served on the governor's water council to support and plan for strong water resources for our city, our region, and our state as a whole. I have worked daily to be a strong conservative voice in tough economic times with an emphasis on increased economic development efforts, reduced waste in local government operations and spending, and policy making that helps, not hurts, local business interests and opportunities.