Please write a short biography of yourself (this answer may be up to 200 words; you might include such things as birthplace, career, community involvement/volunteer efforts, family, etc.):
I was born and raised in Anaconda, Montana. My husband, Kyle, and I have 4 children and two dogs. In 1994, Kyle and I moved to Carson City, and from 1994-2002 I taught at Eagle Valley Middle School, Carson Middle School and Carson High School. I also coached intramurals, cross country, track, girls’ basketball, and volleyball. I taught middle school Student Leadership which gave me the opportunity to reach out to the community of Carson City with my students. We coordinated F.I.S.H Food Drive, Leukemia Fundraiser, Make-A-Difference Day Clothes and Food Drive, Elementary Tutoring Program, and Nevada Cares Pen-Pals Program. I received Rotary Teacher of the Month, Eagle Valley Middle School PTSA Teacher of the Year, and Eagle Valley Middle School Staff Appreciation Award.
After having twins in late 2001, I began teaching night school at Carson Alternative Education, part of the Carson City School District. I remain active in our community by coaching and being team mom for my children’s various sports activities, and I’m one of the directors of the Pinkerton Ballet Theatre.
I believe strongly in giving back to my community, and I’m passionate about Carson City and making it an even better place to live.
Describe your vision for the Carson City of the future:
My vision is to continue working to improve the family friendly atmosphere in order to benefit the future of Carson City residents. I believe that communities thrive through economic hardships, by focusing on a diversified business environment, supporting local businesses, encouraging community involvement, and providing an excellent quality of life. My parents live in Carson City, and through their experiences; I’ve come to understand that the needs and desires of young professional families are quite similar to those of other generations. I want to bridge the gap between generations and continue to promote Carson City as a healthy, business-friendly community.
What are the three most important elements to the quality of life in Carson City?
1) Regional cooperation to share resources and reduce service costs. American cities can cooperate in innovative efficient ways. Leadership focus must be heightened more on people – less on county boundaries.
2) Civic investment. Public Economics 101: community assets generate revenue. Building schools, a library, parks, and cultural facilities ensures residents, not commuters. A tax base from well-paid residents means we all pay a little and get a lot; otherwise disproportionate burdens are on those who remain.
3) Civility of Elected Officials. We need to end bickering, be proud of our positions, even if we disagree, and together implement what our citizens expect.
List the three most important issues Carson City will face in the next few years:
Like every other American community, weathering the difficulties of our nation’s uncertain economy is already an important State issue and very much an important Carson City issue.
As Supervisor I will be a part of a team who: makes practical, data-driven decisions with significant input from front-line authorities; sets logical priorities to address immediate needs and preserve opportunities, and, I will be completely straightforward with citizens; especially as we look ahead and face the need to:
a) support our local economy
b) maintain public health and safety, and
c) address civic investment opportunities.
Recently, the Chamber of Commerce executive director printed an assessment of the aesthetics of Carson City’s business districts, detailing many buildings and sites in disrepair. What kind of “first impression” do you believe Carson City makes on visitors? Would you support tougher standards on building owners, even if they require those business owners to be fined or closed if they do not comply?
Property pride is evident in many places: WNC and CTRMC are two jewels, likewise our remodeled Carson Middle School and in downtown on 3rd Street. “Tougher standards,” if they happen, will be determined by the business community. It is important we “do” more than “complain.” While fining business owners will force them to minimally comply, I believe successful, positive change comes from positive examples. For my part, I support our master plan Envision Carson City (adopted 2006). The plan screens in a healthy business mix, an involved business community and a rich quality of life.
Sales tax revenues have been declining steadily in the city due to the slow economy. If this trend continues, what can the city do to compensate? For example, would you consider layoffs as part of the solution?
The largest employment sector in Carson City is either public or quasi-public: State, City, College, Hospital, School District and Federal Government – and many private professionals who have public contracts – people working in these areas compliments our business community; layoffs mean less local money in our town. Every laid off employee means one less customer … providing services with good jobs from a dedicated public work force is the basics of an economically healthy capital city. Layoffs can be part of a tide of circumstances; practical decisions – not knee jerk decisions – must be made when such circumstances present themselves.
How would you characterize the level of crime in Carson City, including gang-related crime? Do you believe the city needs more law enforcement officers?
Crime in Carson City is directly related to the health of our community. Focus on a healthy community will allow Carson City to manage crime as well as any city in America. Focus on healthy community building ie: great civic assets, great schools, great healthcare, residents with great jobs (not commuters with the great jobs) and great quality of life initiatives maintains manageable crime levels, especially gang-related, because the healthier the community the healthier and less crime prone are its citizens.
How will you vote on the public safety ballot question that asks voters if they want to increase their property taxes to add more firefighters, paramedics and law enforcement officers? Why?
The Ad Hoc Advisory Committee recommended an additional ambulance and fire protection, deputies for a Gang Unit, 6 Patrol Deputies, 2 Court Deputies, and 5 Operators. This ballet question is in front of all voters, which I am one of those voters. I am personally voting yes on this ballot question. I feel this is insurance my family and our community needs.
How will you vote on the V&T tax ballot question, which proposes using sales tax to provide $10 million for the railroad in return for a share of the profits? Why?
Carson City has contributed in excess of $21M to an over $60M project. This is an advisory question before the voters of Carson City, and I will abide by the final vote of the people. I would love to see the V&T completed to Carson City, but we must focus on community building to include libraries, parks, public schools, public safety, Western Nevada College, non-profits, our rich history, especially in these difficult economic times.
Is there enough for young people to do in Carson City? Could the city do better? If so, how?
I surveyed about 25 young people from middle school to high school age and all of them said “No”; Carson does not have enough activities for our young people. Those surveyed did have some suggestions; miniature golf, dance club, street dances similar to what was offered this summer (Fridays @ 3rd), an addition to the skate park (more geared to the advanced skaters), additional shopping, and family fun center: which could include roller skating, laser tag, arcade, and race tracks.
Carson City has a detailed plan to make the downtown more inviting to walking traffic, which includes a reduction in lanes. Do you support the overall plan? What are your ideas for improving downtown?
I fully support the planning efforts that are underway in downtown, reducing lanes is still to be determined and will be based on solid factual information before any reduction would be approved, but the greater issue is that we are on the right track. Our downtown is our heart.
The city has recently attracted retailers by offering monetary incentives. Do you support this policy? If not, what strategy do you believe the city should use to attract businesses to locate here rather than in nearby communities?
I support prudent public/private partnership investment as long as taxpayers’ dollars are fully protected and the investment bears economic fruit.
Carson City has been in competition with Douglas County for retail businesses and the sales tax dollars they bring. Is this competition healthy? Are you in favor of exploring an arrangement that would combine business recruitment efforts and share sales tax revenue?
As I said above, regional cooperation to share resources and reduce service costs is one of the most significant issues facing Carson City. American cities can cooperate in innovative efficient ways. Leadership focus must be heightened more on people – less on county boundaries.
Do you believe Carson City’s library is adequate? Would you support a tax to expand and improve the library? Absolutely not.
It was built for a community of 18,000 and now serves more than 250,000 visitors each year, has more than 30,000 active library card users. I completely support civic investment in a downtown central library. Such a civic facility could become and economic engine for a rejuvenated downtown. Our community would fall in love with a beautifully designed, state-of-the-art 21st Century library that would function in 21st Century ways, bridge a growing digital divide and further tie into our beautiful existing museums, places of learning, cultural facilities, and civic and government buildings.
Do you believe the city’s bus system is adequate? Should it be expanded?
J.A.C is essential and must be expanded. It attracts green citizens and establishes green practices. Research suggests, even in today’s housing market, lofts and townhomes near transit hubs are steady or increasing in value. In Carson this means opportunity to build our property tax base and offer homes the marketplace wants. We need a downtown hub, linkages with public transit throughout the region, more mapping and signage and route expansions – this will help immediately and position us for desirable housing. With federal partnerships we have opportunity to get what we need.
Do you believe Carson City has an adequate number of parks and similar facilities? Why?
I am proud to be a part of a community that taxes itself for parks, recreation and open space. Our quality of life depends on continued support of parks and recreation. In fact, more gathering spaces like small amphitheaters, pocket parks, and trails have a direct relationship to a stronger local economy. I will do everything I can to provide resources for continued priority toward operation and maintenance of our recreational, arts and cultural assets, and support continued growth in such areas.
What role should the city play, monetarily and otherwise, in supporting private efforts in the areas of social services and arts? (examples include Partnership Carson, City, CASA, etc.)
The City’s role is to implement Envision Carson City (adopted 2006). The master plan screens in a healthy business mix, recognizes the economic power of our downtown, values the arts and our cultural assets, makes parks, recreation and open space a priority, expands public transit …. among many more forward-thinking things. Implementation will not create perfection – but it will nurture economic and civic health. Otherwise we’ll spend most of our efforts, monetarily and otherwise, dealing with what happens when we ignore prevention: missed opportunities for the good things and what-do-we-do-now challenges.
What else would you like to say to voters about your qualifications and ideas?
I want to be a part of a team with smart and enlightened elected officials who ask their citizens what their needs are, process the collective response and then represent our community with dignity and grace. I will listen. While enjoying activities in Carson City, I’ve spoken with thousands of residents and see a high sense of pride in Carson City. I will be proud to serve each and every one of you.