What are the issues that affect our community most?
Fiscal responsibility – City government must live within its means just as all families and businesses must do. We as city leaders have maintained low property tax rates and excellent bond ratings in recent years despite one of the worst economies in history. This will put us in a position in the years ahead to adequately support our infrastructure and transportation needs while maintaining low taxes and strong reserves.
Maintain momentum in economic development – We are fortunate to have the basic ingredients that companies seek—an educated workforce and an excellent school system. Franklin has had tremendous success in recent years in recruiting jobs, including the location of major corporate headquarters in our community. We must continue this momentum while also doing all we can to support our existing businesses and ensuring that they thrive. As city leaders, we are committed to an atmosphere of professionalism and efficiency as we work with local business to grow our economy.
Transportation – Traffic congestion and commute times continue to be a challenge as our community grows. Our responsibility as city leaders going forward is to prioritize transportation projects based on overall level of need and availability of funding. We will continue to use our capital projects ranking and funding process through the CIC committee to make informed and objective decisions. We will engage in responsible, long- range planning to position ourselves to have the most effective transportation system and the funds available when we need them.
Develop a long range water plan – It was only a few years ago that Franklin faced a water shortage and forced some short term “quick fixes” to maintain the city’s water supply. By 2012, we will have completed a study that will outline our needs for water and water treatment for the next thirty-five years. It is critical that we align our planning with our population forecasts so that we can stay ahead of growth and support this important part of our infrastructure.
Become a top 25 sustainable City – Franklin is known as a very livable and walkable city and city leaders have made a commitment to promote sustainability. This involves efforts to promote our city-wide “blue bag” recycling program, which has had tremendous success will become a self-supporting program in the near future. We will continue to look for ways to promote conservation within city government to save taxpayer money and encourage our businesses and families to adopt sustainable practices that benefit us all.
Focus on improving educational opportunities – Education is a key to any successful community. It is a critical component of our efforts to attract business and to support our existing businesses through an educated and well-trained workforce. In addition to supporting and partnering with our local school systems, we will support efforts to develop a new campus for Columbia State Community College in Williamson County. This will give Franklin an advantage over other communities and help support the State of Tennessee’s new emphasis on developing and strengthening its community college system.
Paid for by Ken Moore for Mayor, Lisa Lu Smith treasurer.