Glenn S. Wrightson is running for mayor of Atlanta.
Candidate website: GlennWforMayor.com
What is your current job (include the name of your employer) and list any significant memberships in public service organizations?
Consultant to municipalities – budgeting and examining the source and use of funds ( fees – property taxes penalties and grant money – as well as now funds are allocated for admin, operational, reserve funds, and inter-departmental transfers.
What is the biggest issue facing your constituents and why are you the best candidate to address it?
The biggest issues aside from household economic issues is confidence in government regarding the proper use of tax dollars – to provide expected deliverables – deliverables include providing core services at the least cost – core services to include law enforcement, fire control, water and sewer services, road maintenance, business license, permitting and the host of other services the City is to provide – I am the best candidate to address this matter because I may best know the value of a dollar and shall set standards to obtain the highest level of services for all monies spent.
How do you define “affordability” in housing and what is a specific tactic you would use to improve it?
I define “affordability” in housing as the sum of costs that can reasonably be expected to be paid by an occupant – in order to reside in his dwelling with costs not burdening one’s budget to the extent that he may no longer afford to reside in his dwelling – As Mayor I would * stop, at least in the short term, any tax credits to developers and new businesses * not sell City property to entrepreneurs for pennies on the dollar as Atlanta did with Fort McPherson * lead the charge to have commercial properties be assessed with the same relative value as is the residential class * stop unnecessary spending to try to reduce property taxes * review the Water and Sever rates to see if they may be lowered.
City Hall has been dogged by an apparently ongoing federal investigation involving accusations of corruption in the previous mayoral administration. How would you help restore public trust on matters of staff spending and contract procurement?
Do the right thing – use good judgement and have honest people be in positions of authority.
In 2020, Atlanta and the nation experienced two historic events: the COVID-19 pandemic and protests about racial justice and police brutality. What is a public-policy lesson you learned from those events?
That we have to establish the proper balance between individual rights and the rights of the community – individual rights cannot supersede the rights of the community to be healthy and safe.
The debate about the location of a public safety training center is an example of longstanding tension over whether Atlanta’s urban planning should be more top-down from corporations and private groups or more bottom-up from communities and neighborhoods. What is your approach to planning processes and is there a specific change you would make?
I would insist there be unrestricted community input though the NPU’s – recommendations from unbiased evaluations of local quality academic resources and use guiding principle of fairness and good judgement from both private and elected City leaders.
Do you support the Atlanta public safety training center’s location on Key Road in DeKalb County? Why or why not?
I would prefer that we had no need for policing and we would not should everyone obey the laws. Yet, I do support the location decision although I would have preferred it be located elsewhere. The City leaders had reached a point where a pending decision needed to be made. With the prevalence and increase of crime required public interest prevail. The promise to plant 100 trees for every tree removed added justification to placing the facility on Key Road. I believe we accept the decision and welcome the opportunity to train officers to use more sensitive law enforcement restrictive measures in a state of the art facility.
Who is the main expert you turn to for information on understanding and addressing crime and what is an important fact you have learned from them?
The main expert I have learned from is an elderly neighbor that tells me we need to attract the youth into the community of law abiding citizens with a measure of hope. And to have swift and decisive punishment for some offenses.
What are some areas of opportunity for the mayor’s office to work in partnership with the Atlanta Public Schools superintendent and board?
As Mayor, I would address High School student assemblies, I would seek to bridge a pool of student advisors and counselors between the school system and a City youth programs – I would not withhold property deeds from the APS so it may have additional resources to benefit students – I would discourage over-teaching white supremacy as the cause of poverty to fuel cultural / economic distinctions. I would have every high school student tour City Hall to witness the workings of their City government.
Describe how you envision Invest Atlanta operating under your administration. What changes, if any, would you implement?
I agree with the objectives of the organization and the statement of its core values. As Mayor I would promote the driving economic aspirations with temperance to ensure our growth does not exceed our capacities. We do not want to stop economic growth and neither should we want to choke on our prosperity. There must be balanced objectives to retain a flavor of hospitality, concern for legacy citizens and mutual community benefits. With tax credits we have pushed higher tax burdens on escalated property values paid for by higher wages employees and caused housing to be less affordable. We must stop, or at least slow this progressive deterioration of an individual’s place in our communities.
Explain your leadership style and how it would best serve the people of Atlanta.
My leadership style is not self-centered and instead is to have people focus on the common tasks and goals at hand. All of us are to pull in the same direction and to appreciate that we have employment. I am a less talkie talkie and more do ey do ey type of person. I would insist that all employees that were paid for 8 hours of work per day – actually work 8 hours – If not, they would be terminated. Keep in mind that we are dealing with taxpayers’ money. I would oversee the management of the departments to ensure that human and physical resources were used as each and every taxpayer would rightfully expect.
Anything else that you want to share for voters who may be undecided?
We need to stop electing the City leaders from the same pool of politicians and have a new City leadership. I am educated, responsible and would first have the citizens’ interests at heart.
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