Candidate Forums, "Roll-Carts" Vote, and Race/Equity Presentation
February 28, 2016
With the Fourth Ward City Council election just over a month away, it's Candidate Forum season. I encourage you to try to attend at least one of these events so you can compare my positions and my responses to specific questions with those of my opponent.
There are three Candidate Forums this week:
- Monday, February 29th, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm at City Hall, 701 E. Broadway: Hosted by Columbia Disabilities Commission
- Tuesday, March 1st, 6:00 - 8:00 pm at Bethel Baptist Church, 201 E. Old Plank Road: Hosted by Race Matters, Friends
- Friday, March 4th, 12:00 - 1:00 pm at Columbia Country Club, 2210 Country Club Drive: Hosted by Muleskinners
Ballot Issue on "Roll-Carts"
Another important date for democracy is Tuesday, March 15th when registered voters within city limits will be asked whether or not to prohibit the City of Columbia from using so-called "Roll Carts" and "Pay As You Throw" trash collection systems.
For more information about this issue, please review the following two web sites:
- Committee for Roll-Cart Choice - www.cheapersafergreener.com
- Solid Waste Advisory Group (SWAG) - www.swagcou.com
While I do not support forcing anyone to switch to roll-carts against their will, I plan to vote "No" on March 15th along with many other Fourth Ward voters who have contacted me about this issue. I believe it would be especially irresponsible to eliminate the option of a "Pay As You Throw" system, which allows the City to charge less to households that generate little trash, and more to those that generates more.
Presentation on Race, Equity, and Privilege
Finally, I want to let you know about an opportunity to explore the complex, uncomfortable, but very important issues of Race, Equity, and Privilege in America.
On Tuesday, March 8th at 6:00 pm, Tim Wise - educator and author of White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son - will speak at Jesse Hall. For a preview of Wise's research and general thesis, take a look at this panel discussion from a recent National League of Cities conference. In particular, check out Tim Wise's opening comments (10:30 - 15:10) after NLC Executive Director Clarence Anthony introduces the event.
Thanks to the efforts of MU students and others, we are finally starting to have these difficult conversations in Columbia. The future quality and prosperity of our city depends on resolving problems that have been ignored for decades. Tim Wise's presentation is a great way to engage in this important community discussion.
I am holding Constituent Conversations at Dunn Bros. just once next month - on Sunday, March 20th. However, I'm planning to knock on 300 Fourth Ward doors every weekend between now and the election, so I may be able to discuss City issues with you in your neighborhood.