Previously, I told you that we really need a Council who works together, so we need you to elect people who demonstrate a willingness to work with current council members.
Today, I add to that: We need you to elect candidates whose experiences will complement those of the current Council, candidates who will make us stronger as a body. Our Council has seven seats, and all seats are elected at-large. That means each council member represents the entire city. The 7 council members should work together, and they should be able to debate and make decisions in the best interests of the entire city. They should represent a wide variety of strengths because no one council member can know it all.
Mr. Gooch has recently started a series of Facebook posts to help citizens better understand the past, present, and future state of the city budget. This got me thinking about how our experiences help us with the city’s budgeting. Mr. Gooch has an MBA and owns his own small business. He’s constantly whipping out his calculator in meetings and demanding of people, “Show me the numbers!”
Likewise, Mr. Cummings is a bank executive with an MBA. He’s quick with the calculator, too, and when we talk about bonds or contracts, his input is invaluable. During budget discussions, he calls upon a vast array of experience, giving us practical examples to help us think creatively about our options.
Mayor Curtis also owns a successful small business. That’s why she’s such a strong advocate of “living within our means.” I’ve watched her red pen mark through budget line items and make meticulous annotations detailing why.
As for me, I work for the great state of South Carolina as a Department Head overseeing a $1,000,000+ budget and around 50 employees. What I know and have experience with is that budgeting in the public sector is very different than budgeting in the private sector. And this brings another perspective to our budget discussions.
So when you’re considering the candidates running, consider those who will add to the experience and knowledge we already have on Council. Who will help make your Council, and the City of Simpsonville, stronger? And vote for those candidates.
Although we’ve made a lot of progress, we still have real problems that need real solutions–and we need candidates with real experience to help us continue moving forward.