Ashland mayoral election 2008

Editor's Note: These are the results of a Tidings survey e-mailed to all candidates.

DT: How old are you?

PG: 37

DT: How long have you been in Ashland?

PG: Ashland has been in my heart since I first moved here in 1996. I lived here from 1996 to 2001, and I visited several times a year while living in the Bay Area in California. I moved back in the winter of 2007 and have been here ever since.

DT: What are your top three priorities?

PG: Food and water security, creating a 365 -day economy and sustainable/renewable energy.

DT: What is the biggest issue facing Ashland in the next two years, and how do you intend to address it?

PG: The biggest issue facing Ashland is declining economic opportunity. I intend to address it by helping to generate a 365-day economy. Initially I would look to identify where necessary services are drawing money out of the city and look to fill those needs locally. We can also create jobs investing in our local infrastructure in terms of increasing local production of food and energy. None of these things will happen overnight, but the sooner we get started the sooner we will achieve whatever goals we set. There is also the 2007 Economic Opportunity Analysis which outlined a variety of assets and industries that could be supported here.

DT: What kind of experience do you have, and how will it affect your approach to city government?

PG: As manager of a thriving local business that doubled its gross revenue under my administration, I know how to set goals and achieve them. I was able to strengthen the relationships necessary to turn a struggling business into a thriving enterprise. Working with the Democratic Party of San Francisco, I learned how goal setting, project management and follow-through are essential to the effective management of city government. I will bring the same strengths of managerial discipline, fiscal discipline, relationship building, goal setting and achievement to Ashland government.

DT: Would you try to be a strong leader, or do you see your role more as the facilitator of City Council meetings?

PG: I would be a strong leader. At this time, I believe that Ashland is in need of a strong leader, and I believe that good facilitation is the hallmark strong leadership.

DT: What do you think the city government's role should be in relation to the business community?

PG: I believe it is the city government's role to support our business community while protecting our residents' quality of life.

DT: Is the current pace of growth in Ashland desirable?

PG: According to the Ashland Economic Opportunity Analysis, completed in January 2007, Ashland is experiencing a reasonable rate of growth. My concern is the style and purpose of that growth. What are we building, and how and why are we building it?

DT: Should the city government continue to devote resources to affordable housing?

PG: Yes.

DT: How would you address the city government's growing financial problems?

PG: There are no easy answers to budget issues. Sitting on the Citizen's Budget Committee, I will have the opportunity to work with very intelligent and dedicated people to tackle this complicated matter.

DT: How old are you?

PG: 37

DT: How long have you been in Ashland?

PG: Ashland has been in my heart since I first moved here in 1996. I lived here from 1996 to 2001, and I visited several times a year while living in the Bay Area in California. I moved back in the winter of 2007 and have been here ever since.