I know you are busy, but I wanted to send out a quick, fun, 60-second video to remind everyone about the significant issues facing Chapel Hill. If you agree we must change, please help get the word (and this video) out!
[This video is easy to share; paste this link into Facebook or other social media. Thank you! https://video.wixstatic.com/video/850d50_5c2b20911d7143a48f227968261b557d/1080p/mp4/file.mp4 ]
This election is likely to be close. Every vote matters!
Early voting is in full swing, so I wanted to share specific voting information. If you aren't registered to vote, you can register and vote simultaneously during the early voting period. Also, you can go to any early voting poll sites during early voting. Please check the schedule below to determine where and when you can vote in Chapel Hill.
More information for early voting is here:
Lastly, I would be honored to receive your vote and urge you to also vote for our team: Adam Searing for Mayor, Elizabeth Sharp, David Adams, and Breckany Eckhardt for Town Council.
Thank you, and happy voting!
I would also like to forward an endorsement for our slate from David Kiel and Amey Miller. They have permitted us to share this.
Why Amey and I Support Searing, Soll, Sharp, Adams, and Eckhardt in the Municipal Election
Dear friends and neighbors,
Along with many others we have been deeply concerned about the direction our town is taking for the last decade, at least. So, each election cycle we have sent out to friends and neighbors some recommendations for the upcoming municipal elections and some people have found this helpful. We hope you will too. Please let us know your thoughts. We are continuing to learn about the town issues and how things may be improved, and every conversation adds information and perspective.
This past Saturday and Sunday, I listened to the presentations by the two main groups of candidates, each allied with one of the mayoral candidates, Jess Anderson or Adam Searing. While I thought that Jess Anderson was persuasive, forceful, and intelligent, and Amy Ryan and Jon Mitchell gave good account of themselves and have impressive credentials, I was more persuaded by the arguments, presence, preparation, background, and passion of Searing, Soll, Sharp, Adams, and Eckhart. I buy their argument that electing their whole slate is the surest way to restore balance to the town's development process and to preserve what we can of Chapel Hill's distinctive character while continuing to grow.
Each of the Searing slate's candidates were impressive in their own way and quite different in style, background, and emphasis, but united in their commitment to changing the culture of the Council and the government:
• Democracy and Transparency: More responsive and less derisive attitudes toward citizen input, e.g., paying more attention to the citizen advisory boards whose input have been ignored so as to fast-track new development projects.
• Accountability and Responsibility: Enforcing the Town's existing guidelines and policies toward green space, affordable housing, traffic, and stormwater----something the current council has refused to do, resulting in the high-end development, congestion, and loss of trees we see all around us.
Each group of candidates said the main power the Town has to shape growth is to negotiate with the developers for the features and benefits the town wants. Pam Hemminger, the outgoing mayor, and Council members Ryan, and Anderson had eight years to do this, but failed, granting waiver after waiver of town requirements that could have improved housing affordability, walkability, greenspaces, storm water management, and public safety.
Despite assurances that the many development projects approved by the Council would increase revenues above the large associated outlays, Town finances are not good. Despite high tax rates, we are struggling to pay for a new police station, parks, greenways, and affordable housing. We need new eyes, new perspectives, and more passion about these issues.
Despite agreement that we need more low-and-middle income housing, we have built vast numbers of luxury apartments and condos. A controversial answer to these problems is the rezoning that will allow duplex construction. This policy was touted both as a partial solution to affordability and nothing to worry about because it won't have a big impact. I really like Renuka's Soll's analysis on this topic.
Let's shape our future together!