Lives near: U.S. 77 and Old Cheney
Occupation: Educator and issues advocate
Political party: Republican
Education: Bachelor of Science in business administration (accounting), Kansas State University
What sets you apart from the other candidates seeking this office?
My background in accounting and municipal auditing provides me the skills and discernment to dig into budgets, plans and proposals and work with those who will carry them out; but it is my passion for good, basic and limited government that sets me apart from my opponents. Every decision I make will be to maximize the legitimate freedoms of individuals, families, churches and businesses.
What will you prioritize?
My campaign theme is “Back to Basics.” The City Council, as the legislative body, must work early and hard with each department to ensure that essential city services are budget priorities, properly funding public safety and maintenance of roads and other infrastructure. Since I believe in the free market, my other priorities include cutting unwieldy regulations, ending business-killing mandates, promoting our local economy and fighting for tax relief.
Who do you see as your core constituent and how will you engage with those you represent if elected?
As an at-large candidate, my core constituent is every single member of the Lincoln community. If elected, I will have 290,000-plus bosses. As a mother of seven children, I have spent most of my life as a listener, consensus-builder and decision-maker. I am approachable, teachable, and I look forward to working with each member of the Lincoln community that wants to be involved in their government.
How do you think the city should address calls for reformed policing?
There is no indication the Lincoln Police Department needs reform. The national mantra of defunding the police is not a serious proposal, it is a political slogan, and I will not play politics with lives and safety. The police must be given support in their essential task of safeguarding our community in a caring, respectful way. We want our first responders to be responsive and accountable to citizens. I will continue to promote good relationships between the police and community.
Do you support issuing bonds to finance a new central library that would replace the Bennett Martin Library on the old Pershing Center block? Why or why not?
My family has been blessed with access to Lincoln’s public libraries, through participating in the Summer Reading Program, using library resources while my children research school projects, and selecting books and movies to enjoy at home. I will always be grateful for and supportive of our library system. However, taking on debt that will tax our citizens and children well into the future is not the solution for financing a central library.
What policies or approaches should the city adopt to increase housing affordability?
I believe that affordable housing happens when the local economy is flourishing and when people can work to pay for their own homes. Lowering the tax burden, reducing regulations that go beyond necessary safety guidelines, and having housing available at all price points is also important. Lincoln should allow Sanitary Improvement Districts. By limiting the debt that SIDs can incur and ensuring that good engineering and solid management happens with each SID, we can safely promote natural and affordable growth.
A petition drive in 2012 blocked implementation of the Fairness Ordinance, meant to stop discrimination against LGBTQ people in housing, employment and public accommodation. Should the City Council repeal the Fairness Ordinance or put it on the ballot for a citywide vote?
Nine years ago, the 2012 Fairness Ordinance was successfully repealed by 10,000 Lincoln voters. Lincoln's charter provides the citizens an opportunity to redress any ordinance passed within 15 days. At that time, City Council members had the opportunity to respond to the will of the people yet took no action. My promise to Lincoln citizens is I will listen and work hard to ensure the voices of all citizens are heard and each member is treated with dignity and respect.
Has the city done enough to fund street repairs? If not, what approach would you propose to get more road improvements done?
As I have listened to citizens door-to-door, their top concerns are high taxes and street maintenance. Pot-holed, unsalted and poorly funded and maintained roads are a result of misplaced budget priorities. Though vehicle owners pay wheel, motor vehicle and gas taxes, this essential city service has not been fully funded in decades. Citizens feel betrayed. Streets are needs which taxes are intended to fund. The City Council must use its investigative and budgetary powers to get it done without increasing taxes.
Do you support the mayor’s Climate Action Plan? Why or why not?
As a farmer’s daughter, I know the intrinsic value of stewardship. While the plan contains some worthwhile endeavors, it is the Green New Deal for Lincoln. As a whole, it threatens the economic prosperity of Lincoln. It will be the governing document through which all other plans and budgets are filtered, yet it contains few price tags. Riddled with excessive business and personal regulation, it will have an adverse effect, stunt economic growth and limit freedom. I vigorously oppose it.
With the city considering ways it can protect against future Salt Creek floods, what efforts would you support?
Living next to Salt Creek, after a big flood several years ago, we rowed our canoes up and down Old Cheney helping people trapped on Hunts Drive. Flooding along Salt Creek has been a long-term problem, which is why we have Wilderness Park as a watershed. I am open to exploring commonsense, cost-effective solutions moving forward that do not undermine personal property rights or create unreasonable, unjustified regulations passed on to citizens and businesses.