Candidate Michael Pinkston – District 8

What endorsements have you received for your current candidacy?

I have not received any official endorsements; however I have been encouraged to run by several important groups.  I am open to endorsements, and would consider it an honor if the Fayetteville Regional Association of Realtors would like to endorse my campaign.

If offered, would you accept contributions from political action committees affiliated with the real estate industry? (RPAC, buildPAC etc.)

Yes I would.

With crime being the #1 City Council priority, what solutions would you bring to the table and how would you fund them?

There are at least three things that I would like to see happen immediately when elected.  First, I would like to see more emphasis placed on the program called “citizens on patrol.”  This is a valuable tool for law enforcement in identifying crimes that are taking place or about to take place.  The deterrent aspect of this program should not be under played; “citizens on patrol” is a valuable asset to our community.  Second, we need an increase in number of our community watch programs.  This is where council can make a big difference.  Council can go into an area and help jump start new community watch programs and provide them with the tools to help get them started, as well as programs strategis, necessary to become a successful long term organization.  Third, as a newly elected councilman, I fully intend to take the opportunity to ride along with our policy and fire fighters in our city.  It will become my job to observe and support both local law enforcement and fire fighters wherever possible.  By riding along with local law enforcement, not only will I gain a better understanding of just what our police go through on a daily basis, I will also be able to make better informed decisions regarding the Police Department.

Additionally, I am committed to keeping criminals off Fayetteville streets.  Criminals need to know that when they are caught that there WILL be consequences for their action.  They need to be put in jail until their trial date, not sent home to commit more crime.

I am going to work hard to see that criminals are prosecuted to the full extent of the law, no more slaps on the wrist, no more catch and release.

I will push hard for both the city and the county to corroborate in all matters regarding law enforcement, as well as the prosectution of criminals.

We will need to speed up trial dates; this will mean that we may half to to to night court and/or Saturday court in order to deal with the large back log of criminal cases.  If crime is as serious as we say it is, and I for one believe it is, then it is going to take the consolidated efforts of a lot of people across the city and county to stamp out crime.  I have never thought of myself as a crime fighter, however, if that’s what it takes to make Fayetteville a safe place to live in I am in for the fight.

As to the funding, many of the programs already exist, and those that don’t we will haft to dig deep.  I liken it to cancer, if your child was diagnosis with a serve form of cancer you would stop at nothing to find a cure.  Fayetteville is our child, and we as a people and the citizens of this great city need to do whatever it takes to eradicate this cancer from our city.

What is your opinion on the recent issues between the City of Fayetteville and the Public Works Commission?

Of all the possible issues during this campaign season, this is the one which could easily derail a candidate; with that said, I don’t want to skirt the issue because it is important and it is an issue which will work itself out.  Anything which takes away from the issue of crime and jobs for Fayetteville is one I am just not willing to jump into at this time.  I believe that the Davenport Lawrence Study has raised some serious concerns and I believe that any issues between city council and PWC can and will be amicably worked out to the benefits of our citizens.

What are your thoughts on a new city sign ordinance?  What would you like to see in the ordinance?

One of the reasons this is such an important question is because it has to do with the economic growth and development of Fayetteville as well as all existing businesses in the city.

Like manly well-meaning ordinances, this is one which can’t meet the need of many businesses.  Fayetteville has been described as an UNFRIENDLY place to do business, and the “one size fits all” attitude does not help the image of Fayetteville because we are NOT a “one size fits all” city.  The city needs to be flexible to meet the needs of each business.  This is going to mean a little more work on the part of the city employees who are tasked with the responsibilities of working with new and existing businesses.  We must at all cost change the perception that Fayetteville is not a friendly place to do business.  Change the perception and we change the way people and businesses view our great city.

 What new ideas/concepts can you bring to the office you are seeking?

We need to upgrade our airport, this is a high priority for infrastructure, and it will attract more business.  It also gives the perception as well that in reality Fayetteville is on the move.

There has been an idea floated that since Arlington National Cemetery is rapidly filling up, a new cemetery for our nation’s heroes could be developed in Fayetteville, after all we are inescapably a military town.  A new national cemetery would not only provide hundreds of jobs, it would also bring conservatively 500 new people to Fayetteville per day.

The Alliance, the economic development arm of the chamber of commerce has developed a short list of companies which could potentially look at Fayetteville as their new home.  Along with the Alliance, I will work tirelessly to bring as many new businesses to Fayetteville as possible in an effort to raise the standard of living for our citizens and improve the economic environment of our city.

 

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