The quickest way to build wealth and prosperity in a community is through job creation, something we’ve done very little of in St. Paul during the past decade. While redevelopment can certainly be an important tool for economic vitality, when we continue to focus on subsidizing buildings rather than people, the primary beneficiaries are those who plan, finance, and construct these new projects—often at the expense of everyone else.
If we truly want to become a city that works for everyone, we must have a bold vision that focuses on employment opportunities, a well-educated workforce, neighborhood stability, preserving our existing housing stock, and providing basic services that help promote the livability of our communities.
As Mayor, I will:
- Lead the effort to build a community-owned broadband network, the only way we will effectively close the digital divide, ensure that all children have equal internet access inside and outside of the classroom, allow adult learners to engage in distance learning and other educational opportunities, and promote a more vibrant and diverse local economy that can serve as a hub for entrepreneurs, tech start-ups, and small businesses
- Push to leverage city resources that maximize educational outcomes for children, including a citywide mentoring program and meaningful opportunities to gain “on-the-job” exposure to the business world and nonprofit community
- Work to reform our zoning code so that neighborhoods are adequately protected against senseless teardowns and the growing boom in McMansions
- Focus on sensible use of economic tools like TIF (tax-increment financing) or PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) fees so that we do not keep shifting tax burdens from the commercial sector to everyone else
- Insist that the city plow alleys as well as residential streets during the winter, precisely the kind of benefit that should come with our increasing property tax load