Political party: Democrat
Occupation: Business owner (Jan Davis Tire Store)
Education: Attended Western Carolina University
Political experience: Asheville Planning & Economic Development Committee, Public Safety Committee, Boards & Commissions Committee, Downtown Commission, WNC Regional Air Quality Agency, Historic Resources Commission, Planning and Zoning Commission, Civic Center Commission, Tree Commission
Donors (top 3): Jerry Sternberg $1,000; Steve Eargle $300; Vonna Cloninger $300
Endorsements: Mountain Council for Accountable Development
1) What are the best and worst steps City Council has taken in the past two years, and why?
Best: “Implementing a plan to bring … Police and Fire/Rescue departments [salaries] commensurate to other cities in the region. Recruitment and retention have improved tremendously.”
Worst: “Adopting partisan elections. I voted against it because it excludes independent candidates. It is obvious: After returning to nonpartisan, 15 candidates are now seeking office.”
2) What plan(s) do you support for the I-26 Connector project, and why?
“I will actively support whatever plan most realistically meets the needs of the community going forward, is grounded in facts, and brings this long-overdue project to near-term action.”
3) What, if anything, should the city do to improve mass transit?
“I will support more frequency and longer hours on well-traveled routes. I will resist politicizing transit priorities toward special interests.”
4) What specific measures, if any, should the city take to address environmental concerns?
“We have enacted ordinances requiring reduction of fuel by the city fleet, building of LEED-certified new municipal buildings and joined ICLEI. The Sustainability Advisory Committee on Energy and the Environment, initiated by Councilwoman Cape, was put in place to advise Council on environmental issues.”
5) What’s your position on partisan elections?
“I support nonpartisan elections on the municipal level.”
6) As a member of City Council, what would be your top three priorities?
“1) [Repeal] the Sullivan Acts; 2) [Develop and implement] a downtown master plan; 3) [Renovate] or build a new Civic Center and establish a new performing-arts venue; 4) (Equal to No. 3) Strengthen efforts to confront our drug problems and resulting issues with homelessness, crime and abuse of community resources.”
7) What living national political figure do you most admire, and why?
“I have difficulty finding exceptional enthusiasm for any of our current national political figures.”
8) Under what circumstances, if any, would you support forced annexation?
“When the area has the density of its incorporated neighbors, looks like them, meets the criteria established by N.C. and benefits from its proximity to the city, it should share in the costs of the other citizens.”
9) What steps, if any, do you support to promote affordable housing in Asheville?
“[Create] more and better-paying jobs by partnering with business rather than being an obstruction. [Work] with our regional economic-development partners and educational institutions [to achieve] a better-compensated work force. … Continued improvement of permitting, inspections and ordinances [to] encourage the private sector and nonprofits to build [affordable housing].”
10) Would you vote for or against The Ellington high-rise project, and why?
“With some conditions, I will vote for it.”