April 12, 2022
So many candidates. So many questions. So little time.
Consider this Forum a small window on all the questions, and all the issues, that voters have on their minds in the run-up to the May 17 primary. If this is a first introduction to those questions and issues, try attending forums being held by other organizations for more information. Attend events to meet candidates in person.
As the Forum wound down this morning, facilitator Laura McClettie offered space on this page for candidates to respond in writing to questions raised, but not addressed by the candidates for lack of time. See “From the chat box” below.
Greetings from candidates made at the end of this meeting will be posted on the Forum’s elections pages.
From the chat box
Despite a lengthy Forum with all six Democrats vying for three party nominations in the November election for At-Large Board of County Commissioners seats, many questions that had been submitted did not get an airing.
Below are many of those questions. Facilitator Laura McClettie said candidates should know that Forum participants are interested in their answers, and urged candidates to consider submitting written answers to any or all of them. Answers received will be posted below the appropriate question. Candidates should send text answers via e-mail. No limits on length will be imposed, but text may be edited for civility. Questions are numbered to help everyone keep things straight.
(1) Will you use your platform to advocate for federal reparations programs to also address and close the racial wealth gap between black Americans and white Americans?
(2) I have a son and two daughter-in-laws who are CMS teachers. Two are leaving teaching. Pay is part of it, but also they feel so unappreciated. How do we change this to preserve the education of the next generation?
(3) What resources are you willing to offer/promote towards wraparound services like mental health, substance abuse, and veteran services?
(4) So much focus from the county commission has been on health services. The county is also responsible for building parks that are easily accessible to residents. We are woefully underserved by parks. How would you lead in this regard to increase park resources which contribute to overall health?
(5) All the pressing problems we have will be better addressed only if city, county, and schools work together. What are your plans to facilitate this joint work.
(6) What can yall do about 18 wheelers using the shoulder of the road as parking lots (just about everywhere but in Ballantyne)?
(7) To all candidates: Do you agree that the metrics to grade the 42 schools that are referenced is rooted in racism and more accurately a measure of Socio Economic Status? Would you support a metric that values improvement more as an equitable assessment of schools?
(8) What type of small businesses do y’all own and are y’all employing those in marginalized communities?
Dr. Sylvia Bittle-Patton:
(9) Recently Commissioners Jerrell and Meier commissioned a report by the Library to investigate Mecklenburg County’s role in perpetuating racism in the County. Have you read the report and, if so, given the findings of 154 years of racism by the County, what do you think the next steps for the BOCC and County should entail?
(10) There are clear indications of how communities are valued by their parks, playgrounds & trails (or lack thereof). If elected, how would you advance more equitable facilities throughout Meck Co. Park & Rec?
(11) The county has 2 upcoming appointments to the Planning Commission (due by July 1st). We look forward to BOCC’s appointments.
(12) What’s your position on modifying the way our parks system charges nonprofits and community associations for use of our parks facilities?
Jackie Edwards Walton:
(13) The housing continuum is from homelessness to foreclosures for Charlotte and towns. How can all elected bodies work together to keep residents sheltered in safe & sanitary housing?
(14) If the General Assembly allowed Charlotte to put on the ballot the 1% sale tax increase recommended by the Gantt transit plan, would you support it?
(15) Incumbents: Could you explain a little more about how the new VAPA Center came to fruition and what is current source of funding and the funding strategy?
(16) What will you do to ensure as we obtain more mental health agencies we ensure that agencies who look like the children are selected to serve. Those agencies are often overlooked but very qualified.
(17) What will you do to create equitable greenway possibilities – including but not limited to working with the city to fund a “Cross-Charlotte trail” east-west as well as north south – XCHT2?
(18) There is 2M set aside for equity investments. If you are on the commission where do you think money should go or if you get elected where should the money go? Please respond to how YOU believe it should be spent.
(19) What are ways you will collaborate with city council?
(20) What programs would you put in place to let the residents of Mecklenburg County know what the County Commission does and how to access community programs?
(21) Do you agree with the county decisions regarding how they have handled CMS funding?
(22) If you were on the County Commission/or if you are on the Commission, would you vote for additional funds for CMS to support MTSS, and would you work with CMS to challenge the State to provide sufficient funds for this unfunded mandate?