We do big, bold things in Coralville. We have a lot to be proud of and I know we can find innovative and creative solutions for the challenges we face. Here are my priorities for the city council.
Close-knit communities are safe and strong. We have a wonderful community and there's even more we can do to bring our friends and neighbors together and provide additional services. We have a great history of being there for each other. I want to find ways to connect dots between local organizations and community needs.
We have a great Library and Parks and Recreation department in Coralville. I want to find ways to expand programming and accessibility and work to identify any gaps. Local organizations like the Coralville Food Pantry are doing great things in our community. We need to find ways to build on these successes with new, innovative partnerships to provide other services needed by our citizens. This ensures that Coralville remains a welcoming place for all who call it home.
We need to continue to attract high-quality, high-paying businesses. As retail trends shift, we need to ensure that we are planning and investing in economic development accordingly. We should seek out innovative businesses and high-growth industry verticals. With the University of Iowa literally in our backyard with the UI Research Park, we are in a great position to help more businesses like Integrated DNA Technologies and MediRevv lay down roots in Coralville. These employers bring high-tech, high-paying jobs to our community.
We need more citizen-focused economic development that continues to build on these successes in the years ahead. Economic development and community development go hand in hand.
The thriving growth and community amenities we enjoy are the result of many of the investments we've made in our community. However, we need to find opportunities to pay down our debt as quickly as we can. The city has taken several steps in the right direction. I am not in favor of adding new TIF projects until current debt is paid down. If we consider TIF and similar tools in the future, I would like to see more short-term projects at a moderate pace.
Innovative Housing Solutions
Housing impacts people across the income spectrum — from all walks of life and at every life stage, from working families to the elderly. Coralville has historically been an affordable place to live. I’m in favor of the city overseeing innovative projects and facilitating partnerships with developers and other community partners and stakeholders. Housing is an economic development issue as well.
We also have to marry the need for innovative housing solutions with the need to stabilize our older neighborhoods by reinvesting in them. We have to protect these historic parts of our community and keep them from falling into blight. Safe and stable housing and neighborhoods are the bedrock of a healthy community.