It's about community and its people. It's about a small town. And it's also about growing.
These values are important to me. I've dedicated the last two decades of my life to making Frankfort a great place to live and a place that has the quality of life that will attract business to locate and grow.
Growth can mean many things to many people. To me, we need to look inward when we talk about planning for smart growth. What do I mean by that? Suburban sprawl - growing outward into our farms and forests, has proven expensive to us as taxpayers. We have to pay more taxes to subsidize that infrastructure (roads, sewers, waterlines) and community services (police, fire, garbage pickup). Instead, we need to plan for growth (housing & commercial) in areas within the city that already have these things.
Instead of continuing to sprawl, we have enough "infill" locations within Frankfort to sustain growth for the next 40 years. I say this because I've been studying this issue for a long time. For example, the Century Plaza shopping center property offers a lot of land that if designed well and redeveloped, could substantially improve the area, provide more housing, and increase the tax base without the need for more roads, utilities, and emergency services. I encourage you to learn more about these approaches on the Strongtowns website.
Planning for new growth may be important, but growth also means improving our quality of life. Taking care of our citizens and neighborhoods we already have is equally as important. Ensuring property is maintained, improving existing housing, providing great parks and recreational activities for all ages, and addressing crime are critical.
Finally, I believe we need commissioners that have leadership skills. A commissioner must have a vision of where Frankfort should head into the future and a path to get there. A commissioner should also be a good listener because when you listen to people, you might realize that there are a lot of good ideas that folks have to offer.