Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Fourth District “The Hillsider” candidate statements - Gordon Grant

Main issues
A) Finance (constant budget crisis - 36% of general fund relies on LGA money)
B) Economic Development (more economic drivers & good paying job creation)
C) Quality of Life (cutbacks for community centers, youth programs, libraries, parks)
D) Public Safety (staff reduction, but increased demand for services)
E) Streets (using CDTF for other purposes) / Infrastructure (sewer overflow - Consent Decree)
F) Retiree Health care benefits (contingent unfunded liability - pending litigation)
G) Increased taxes/fees (property, utility, service fees - lights)
H) Shrinking population (conflict over the school district red plan)
I will vote to stop short term spending decisions that result into long term obligations.
I will recommend new economic drivers that provide ways to reduce our taxes, attract new industry, grow our economy, safely increase tax revenues, and create new, good paying jobs.
I will donate my councilor salary to the 4th District volunteer organizations or groups that support our community centers, our youth programs, and our parks.
I will support our Police & Fire departments by not reducing staff.
I will vote to stop spending our CDTF money for unrelated projects except for OUR streets.
We should have been able to vote on and to select the school plan of our choice.

Personal Background

I have been a resident and small business owner (Dairy Queen Central Entrance) in the Duluth Heights neighborhood for 12 years.
I retired from the financial services industry after thirty (30) years, and my wife, Judy, is a native of Duluth and a Central High School graduate.
I have been active in the community, I have served on several community committees, and I have followed the current critical issues facing Duluth.
I believe my financial services and small business owner experience, and being actively involved in the community WILL help the city move forward by generating alternative solutions for improvement.