I ran under the slogan MOVE FORWARD. Our city is in a time of transition and we can aim higher. Now that I’m in office, I’m eager to follow up on that philosophy.
Plantation has been the warm, caring center of Broward County for the past 65 years. I want to prepare us for the next 65. I see problems as they are developing, and cut them off at the pass. Having to fix the barn after the horse has escaped is too late.
I advocate increased resident interaction, and understanding what residents want takes work that I’m passionate to do. A journalist at the Sun-Sentinel for 30 years, I will use my abilities to listen and understand all points of view to find the best possible options for our residents. The goal is to help Plantation become the model community for cooperation and interaction.
After talking to many residents, I have edited this block to clarify. Plantation is a beautiful town, and while canvassing I have observed there’s nothing better than walking under a tree canopy, especially at 3 p.m. on an August Saturday. But some homeowners have had difficulty with executing the city’s regulations on trees, sidewalks and fences. This is being addressed right now by a major code revision, led by our Planning and Zoning Department. Because of Hurricane Irma, this has been a growing point of contact for Plantation homeowners, and I am very comfortable having P & Z take the lead on this.
Plantation is one of the county’s best at being a full-service police operation. But we can help our civil servants. I would propose more get-to-know-your-neighbors activities, which help reduce crime. I also would like to have more activities for students near our high schools and middle schools, to keep our teens busier during the afternoon, and cut down on the crimes committed by our youths. I also ask residents to punch in 954-797-2100, the city’s non-emergency number, into their phones for future use. So if you’re reading this, do that now!
I see several budget challenges in the coming years. (I’m a fiscal conservative, with more experience in financial management than most journalists.) We are losing Plantation General Hospital. We will be paying many more pensions as our police force retires. We need to plan for that, while maintaining Plantation’s economy via low tax rates.
Because I covered south Broward municipalities during their post-Hurricane Andrew growth period, I am aware of developments and changes that can affect a community. I will use what I learned from those places and apply them here.
The tone of discourse in Plantation has mirrored what we have seen across the country and hurts my heart. My journalism career was centered on listening to everyone respectfully and hearing every point of view. I’d like to do that now for a city I love.
Because I am experienced with not only traditional media, but social media, I will help us effectively reach every resident. Hey, I love reading the newspaper, but that’s not where every single person receives his/her information any more.