These are the replies I sent in response to the League of Women Voters questionnaire (responses limited to 100 words each):
1. What educational, professional, civic, and community experiences have you had that you believe qualify you for this elective office?
Since buying my house in 2002, I’ve been working toward making the Allied Drive area a safe and productive community. Because the area closely links Fitchburg and Madison, there is a lot of crossover between the two cities. I participate in most related meetings, in both cities, and have good working relationships on both sides. I’ve closely followed planning for the Beltline / Verona Road project over the years, plus have contributed to many land use and SmartCode Charrettes along with other Fitchburg events. People have encouraged me to run because I already do the work and am so involved!
2. What are the most important issues facing the community you seek to represent?
Improving the Allied area will continue to remain a focus, with a lot of exciting projects coming up, involving cooperative efforts between Fitchburg and Madison. The highway construction project will generate many conversations in my district, and cause significant disruption for everyone in the area. The economy is going to remain interesting for a number of years yet. Projects to watch for in the near future include a new fire station (and plans for the old), the new library, new businesses and expansions of existing businesses. I’m looking forward to learning more about parts of Fitchburg outside my corner of it!
3. What criteria will you use to balance economic growth, environmental concerns, and land use planning and regulation?
I am a strong advocate of sustainable planning and eagerly followed Fitchburg’s implementation of SmartCode zoning. I recognize the value of quality construction and aesthetics but keep a strong eye on costs. Through my involvement in community gardening, I’ve developed a strong interest in urban agriculture and hope to be able to help develop an urban ag center in Fitchburg. As the owner of the local Freecycle.org group, I’ve been working toward reducing landfill waste by encouraging reuse of unneeded items. I choose to live modestly and tread fairly lightly in my use of natural resources.