A) Are you familiar with the comprehensive planning process and its role in guiding growth and development, and protecting neighborhoods?

B) What role should citizens have in deciding on growth and development policies for our community?

County Commission
District 1

Terrance Barber

A)

I have a basic understanding of the comprehensive plan and its leadership role in directing growth.  It’s a complex and detailed document, but I’ve been working through it.  My main concern is that we don’t do anywhere near an adequate job of engaging neighborhoods and other organizations in the planning for and building of projects where they live. Also, while the plan is a long-term document, it does need to be able to change to reflect the current needs of various communities and neighborhoods, particularly those that have been traditionally underserved.

B)

Well, now you’ve brought up one of my big beefs with the status quo. Too often, it’s the politicians, staff, or influential people that drive what happens on public property. This turns the process upside down. It should be government asking the people that make up the community, “What do you need?” And to do that, they really need to get out into the community, where the people live and socialize, to ask that question. Government can also do the research to find out what we lack in comparison to thriving communities and engage and inform the community on those things so the community can make informed decisions on what would be the best facilities, services, and amenities of the public properties.

Donna Pearl Cotterell

A)

I know enough to know that the plan is not sufficient to actually guide growth and development, at least not from a community-driven perspective. The Southern Strategy Plan written in 2014 is a good example. It had some wonderful ideas for getting computers and internet into homes, building safe sidewalks and trails, and many other things that never happened. When we don’t follow through with the plans as written, it’s not a surprise that people give up on government . . . and that’s not fair for the people who have traditionally been underserved. 

B)

They should have a lot of input; in fact, community input should start from the problem identification and continue through the ordinance writing and approval process. As it is now, when the community gets to participate, it’s frequently too late in the process. There are many people who believe that there is usually a “hidden” plan developed by staff and influential community members. Commissioners too often work these plans rather than listening to the community at large. When we see how some plans seem to come out of nowhere or others get changed significantly as they go through the development process, it’s reasonable to conclude that hidden plans may indeed have a lot more impact than citizen input. We need a much more transparent process to develop and implement community responsive growth and development policies.

Bill Proctor

A)

Yes, I know how the plan should work as the constitution that sets the standards for guiding growth and development. It’s naïve to believe the plan works as written. We see it every year that the comp plan is changed to benefit what I call the “bigs.” That is, the large, established development interests. Many of the commissioners and staff do not stand up to the bigs and make them toe the line regarding the comp plan.

B)

It hurts me to say it, but significant citizen involvement doesn’t happen like it did years ago. It sounds good on paper all the things we say we do to gather citizen input, but it’s done to little effect when it comes to following the will of the people. But, like I said, that’s on citizens as well as officeholders and staff. People have to demand a say and that their say be incorporated into the policies, at least to a reasonable degree. Too many people have tuned out of the upfront work and only get involved when it’s too late, when the bulldozer is clearing the land.

County Commission
District 2

Sabrina Allen

A)

I have looked at the comprehensive plan and it looks like a good plan but commissioners are not implementing or enforcing it. It needs to be put into action and that is what I would do.

B)

Citizens should have a big role. Town meetings need to happen whenever a project is proposed. The people should have more say than any commissioner or staff. As a commissioner I just bring the collective voice from District 2 residents to the table and advocate on their behalf.

Lynda Bell

Lynda Bell chose not to be interviewed.

Christian Caban

A)

Yes, I have a basic understanding of what is commonly a complicated process.   My belief is that we need to figure out the destination of where we want to go as a city and county:  to get concrete on to what degree and how and where we want to grow and how we want to preserve what we cherish. I want to represent District 2. Residents have told me repeatedly that their primary concern is improved infrastructure. Infrastructure involves a variety of factors from roads, safe sidewalks, stormwater control, protecting water quality, etc. Within the comprehensive plan, to me it gets back to what I mentioned with regard to the restoration of the Governor’s Club:  the plan should specify how we can grow but not disrupt neighborhoods and not degrade our natural environment. I’m a strategist by nature. Building and maintaining responsive infrastructure takes a creative strategy. We haven’t approached infrastructure in that way sufficiently in Leon County and particularly in District 2.

B)

First off, we need to have more people voting in District 2. Currently, this is the lowest voting participation district. Citizens need to educate themselves on the candidates and get out to vote. Elections have consequences. On specific growth and development policies, we need to do a better job of getting community input and, as policies are implemented, make sure commissioners provide feedback to residents on how the policies are working. Finally, we need to educate residents on how to effectively advocate for policies they want. It’s difficult for commissioners to formulate a responsive policy based on receiving emails or by comments from mailed notices. We need to make better use of technology to gather and synthesize community input.

Hannah Crow

A)

I am aware of the document but I need to know more about it and the process. What is working? What isn’t? It needs to have a balance of citizen engagement and builders, everyone in the community.

B)

The citizens should have a very important role- the Plan affects us each directly.

Will Crowley

A)

Yes. I have a strong academic and practical take on the comprehensive planning process. Essentially, the comprehensive plan is our constitution for smart growth.  It provides the legal framework and vision for how we want to thrive. Rather than viewing that as a strength, too often our political leaders have supported tinkering with the plan to solve small issues, often with unintended consequences. The unwarranted expansion of the urban service area is one example of where we’ve gone astray. We also do a poor job of interlinking the land use and transportation elements of the plan, as they were intended to be.

B)

Citizens need to be informed on the issues and then have a respected voice in the policies that are then adopted by their commissioners. Our current methods of community involvement frequently are too staff-driven to accurately bring forth the informed voice of the people. Actually, developers too often play a disproportionate role in policy development. Our quality of life and sense of community suffers in these situations. It’s reasonable for Tallahassee and Leon County to grow and that will necessitate higher densities and other changes in some areas. But we need to have much stronger citizen involvement and for policy makers to listen to that input as we determine where and how those density increases should occur, what the most responsible trade-offs are, how to integrate multi-modal transportation options, what amenities are most community-responsive, and how to protect environmental features.

Max Epstein

A)

I am, I have become pretty familiar with the comprehensive plan. I would say I am slightly less familiar with the actual planning process although it does seem to be driven by staff and not necessarily driven by the experts, the citizen experts, like Pam Hall. I don’t know what we would have done without her help on the Welaunee Amendment. It is pretty clear that the staff never reveals the true cost of these comprehensive plan updates. We have a plan that specifically discourages growth in the northeast so that we can have tax dollars go to the south side and areas that need it; so why are we violating our own comprehensive plan?

I have experienced working on the English Property issue and we had a few simple asks that were never incorporated into the planning process, when it is in our comprehensive plan. For example, they identified areas for green space and we asked them to connect those spaces as the comprehensive plan says to do. However, they wanted to get the most out of the acres and you won’t even be able to ride your bike through the area to Rickards High School, you will now have to go to capital circle to do that.

B)

We need growth, but it needs to be balanced. It needs to come from the citizens, many who are themselves experts. Staff and consultants should be involved but the key piece is the public and their input, from the beginning. We need to have a much larger notification zone. I know it was just expanded but why not expand it more to ½ mile or 1 mile because this is going to affect people. If you are talking about stormwater, that’s going to affect people 10 miles downstream of you unless you do the right thing during the planning process. In particular, when we do have these developments, the commissioners don’t really negotiate on the public’s behalf. They have the power to include things like affordable housing, better development agreements but that never happens. That is what I would be bringing to the table. There is a way to do it all.

We also need to have a true accounting of the cost to taxpayers. Saying that development pays for itself is the “Big Lie.” We are still responsible for building the schools, for the health and safety of the area, and for transportation. The public should have the true cost of these projects. For example, the English parcel issue was going to cost $58 million just for the school system; that was never included in any analysis.  You have to be able to look at all the facts and take it where they lead you, even if that leads you to a place that is uncomfortable.

Manny Joanas

Manny Joanas chose not to be interviewed.

County Commission
District 3

Joey Lamar

A)

I’ve read the entire Comp Plan, all 300+ pages of it. I was frustrated with it because it’s too vague and lenient. The Comp Plan should have standards that are more specific and less subjective and subject to interpretation. I’d like more quantifiability. One thing which particularly concerns me is that the Comp Plan has no affordable housing requirements. Currently, there are only density bonuses that allow developers to get more density and in exchange they must provide affordable housing. However, they are not required to build affordable housing. I would like to see that changed so that all new development would be required to have 10% set-asides for affordable housing.

B)

I support early public involvement.

Rick Minor

A)

Yes. As a sitting commissioner, I’m well-versed in growth management issues. The Comprehensive Plan is intended to be a framework for this community to plan its future growth. People want smart growth and good planning. The ultimate goal of growth management is to improve the quality of life for people who live here. Growth should be sustainable. It should also respect the character of existing neighborhoods, encourage multi-modal transportation options, and it should be compact and avoid sprawl. As growth occurs, people also want good schools. They want growth that doesn’t undermine their quality of life, but rather enhances it.

B)

Citizens can and should be more engaged. Local government can do a better job of listening to concerns and making sure that citizens are aware of these major projects before they get too far along. We need more front-loaded outreach. Too often I hear from people who say: “I didn’t even know this was a project.” That’s not the fault of the citizen, but rather means that government must do better at the outset, making sure that they get the information they need to provide feedback.

Damon Victor

A)

Yes, I’m familiar with it and I’ve read much of the Comp Plan. It favors developers and does not require enough equitable sharing of resources. Its standards need to be tightened and it could do a better job of channeling inevitable growth into proper locations and activities.

B)

Citizens should have a crucial role. Citizens know best what’s going on in their own neighborhoods and they know what they want. They should be engaged early and their input should direct the conversation and the eventual recommendations of staff, not the other way around.

County Commission
District 5

Paula DeBoles-Johnson

A)

Yes, I am familiar with the Comp Plan.

B)

We wouldn’t be having all this public outcry if the public had been allowed to participate throughout the entire process. It just makes sense to involve people in every aspect of the process.

David O'Keefe

A)

I’m not familiar with the exact process, but I am familiar with its role in deciding how we grow and in what can grow where and what happens with the city services area.  Also, I’m aware that we’re going through an update to the Comp Plan, which is another reason I think this is a pivotal year for our community.

B)

To start, citizens need a larger role. An observation I have is that the lack of public participation is the reason we are having six or seven hour long Commission meetings, where citizens are lining up to speak in opposition to an issue in three minute increments. Citizens feel like they are not being heard and often feel like they are speaking to a brick wall. Once we have elected Commissioners who are listening to people’s concerns, they will trust Commissioners to vote in their interest. Our public participation process is not adequate and no matter what the vehicle for participation is, people on the Commission are not listening to their constituents. 

I think the citizens’ role in things like changes to the Comp Plan, updates, zoning, and development changes we need to make it easy for citizens to comment before the vote comes up.  What that looks like to me is that in addition to the regular Commission meetings, we need advocacy groups that may directly communicate with Commissioners, and I think we need to hold meetings via Zoom and in person at different times, locations and different days of the week to get input from people who are not able to attend Commission meetings on a Wednesday afternoon. We are not getting everyone’s input. We are only getting input from people who are able to attend the Commission meeting and those groups who advocate for those who can’t attend. We need much more input from our citizens.  We should have actual outreach meetings that make it convenient and easy for a new group of people who do not typically get to be heard and express their opinions on what they want to see on things like the changes to the Comp Plan and development.  

It would make for a longer process, but this is something we should be doing well before Commission meetings. 

From my observations, it seems pretty clear where people want to see development go.  We don’t want large, sprawling luxury developments that are without adequate environmental impact studies, traffic studies, or adequate infrastructure laid out at the front end, nor do we want commercial strip malls everywhere.  I think we want urban infill that is smart development that fits the neighborhood that it is going into.  One of the things we have that other cities don’t is neighborhood character.  We do have some NIMBY (not in my backyard) reactions from citizens who see what has been done in other neighborhoods and don’t want to see that happen in theirs.  

If we build good communication and trust, we can move forward to develop the things we need like affordable housing—both home ownership and rental—in ways they fit into the neighborhood they are going into.  We can’t just not build things.  We have to build things that neighborhoods want.  Sometimes this goes against property values, but we can’t, for example, build new apartments because someone is afraid that it is going to negatively affect their property value.  It’s a matter of doing it in a way that fits and where everyone has input. 

Jay Revell

A)

I am very familiar with Comp Plan. I was on a panel that met for two years on rewrites of the land use element and mobility plan before COVID hit.  The take away that many of us had is the code doesn’t represent the character of our neighborhoods in a great way. I think other cities have done a much better job in using their planning to codify their values.  Then, when a new project or development is proposed, it is very easy for a developer to understand what the character of that community is, what type of specific architectural design elements should be incorporated, the vernaculars of the neighborhood and that region. We don’t have anything like that here and I think that’s a huge miss for us.  Whether you talk to a neighborhood advocate or a developer, they both will agree that our Comp Plan is in shambles. It needs a lot of work and more than anything else, it needs a clearer vision for who we want to be as a community.  

Some of the things people think of in Tallahassee are our beautiful natural resources and trails and our live oak trees.  All these things are at a critical juncture right now.  We are growing and the amount of growing pains we have experienced recently are only going to get worse as we go from 300,000 people to ½ million, eventually.  If we don’t codify what our values are in a very strong way, we are going to have a very hard time preserving the things that we love. And the Comp Plan is the best vessel for doing that.  The Plan lacks clarity when it comes to preserving who we are and defining the future that we want to build. 

 

B)

There are lot of things our planning staff does right, but there are things that we do ‘backwards.’

Staff, although well intentioned, will try to craft a solution, and then go sell that solution to the public. My experience has always been that if we engage the community on the front end and have processes and systems that allow them to shape the vision first, we are going to get a better product for whatever it is we’re trying to do.  

A lot of frustration builds up from neighborhood residents when every time another issue presents itself, we go through the same tiresome cycle that doesn’t seem to generate results that anybody likes.  I don’t understand why we are not going back to the drawing board and saying we need to invert this.  We need to go very heavy on citizen engagement on the front end. We need the most intense engagement process we’ve ever had in our community. 

We need to be contracting with the best consulting firms in the nation to help guide processes that engage our public in a meaningful way, so that we have a product we are all proud of.  A resident wants to feel like they are a part of shaping their community’s future.  The Land Use Element of the Comp Plan could be a great example.  

In 2024, both the City and the County will turn 200 years old.  To me, this is the opportunity of the Century to have a very long, direct and fully engaged conversation about what we want the future of our community to look like.  I think we need some new, probably outside perspectives on citizen engagement with great representation from businesses and residents to ensure that what we codify are the things we care about most. 

Our code allows for the preservation of things like parks in neighborhoods, but it doesn’t insist on them.  If our code sets out a clear, consistent vision of our community, developers will build to that.  

Dustin Rivest

A)

Yes, I am familiar with it; the most common theme I hear in the community is that we are a very difficult community in which to build.  The Comp Plan is larger than most other municipalities of our size.

I don’t like the way we are governing the amendment process.  One example is the recent amendment to the comp plan on EV charging infrastructure, the way the mandate for prewiring infrastructure was recently handled.  It is now a mandate for any new commercial or residential properties (duplexes or more, I believe). The problems I have are first it’s just prewiring, so this cost is passed on to the consumer, when the majority of EV owners can afford their own installation of EV charging stations at their dwellings. Second, it may have been an attempt to position us for the next competitive round of federal grant funding. I get it, but I don’t think we should be governing this way.  I think this requirement should have been an incentive, rather than a mandate. I don’t think there should be a mandate through an ordinance to developers, private businesses or builders. This does nothing for our future sustainability, for our infrastructure, nor does it positively affect our community.  I think there are many good things in the Comp Plan, but I think these types of mandates are not one of them.

B)

Since attending City and County meetings, I have seen and heard Commissioners say they receive input from everyone—or hundreds of citizens.  But we do not hear from everyone. We hear from the few and the loud and the ones who come to meetings for their three minutes to talk.  We live in a community with many city, county and state employees who are afraid to voice their opinions on things.  There is no way our leaders, right now, have the heartbeat of our citizens.  

What I propose, being in the software development industry and building apps, is to build a software that allows citizens to register using a third-party verification system.  A person could go online and verify they live in Leon County. The system would generate a token with basic demographic information.  Once the system is in place, I as a County Commissioner, could post a question, whether it be a Blueprint issue, Comp Plan amendment etc. and get real feedback in a way that allows me to see what the community wants/feels. It would give citizens a chance to give their voice. I could then share real data with other Commissioners about how people in my District feel about a certain issue.  

Let’s have conversations around issues that are around real data.  Empathetic, data driven decision making is what we need.  The problem is we don’t have the correct data.  

I want to create this system regardless of whether I get elected or not.  I think that as a community, if we don’t get behind data-driven, empathetic information, we are not getting anywhere.  

County Commission
At-Large Group 2

Rudolph Ferguson, Sr.

A)

Yes, I am. It is a big plan but I do understand it and that it should change every 7-10 years and the county’s role. I am not so familiar with the 1990 plan but I would say the role hasn’t changed. The current comprehensive plan is to accommodate growth and development and protect neighborhoods and is not just about the home aspect but also jobs and living wages. Where I stand on the current plan update process is to not increase new homes too much but focus on much needed public services, like new schools, fire, and police station. The goal is not to take away too much and not raise taxes. We should increase public services where they are needed most.

B)

First and foremost, all citizens play a major role at some point in decisions affecting citizens. We should hear from citizens first before tearing down and building. But there also must be some type of compromise. The goal is to make sure and listen to all citizens. Those in public service are elected by the people to serve the people. My method is to listen, learn, and then lead. It is essential to listen first to citizens to make the right decisions.

Josh Johnson

A)

Yes, I am familiar with the comprehensive plan and its role in guiding growth and development and in protecting neighborhoods. One issue I have is comp plan interpretation. I think it has been inequitable. I am not familiar with all update processes.

B)

This is another question that brings out the poet in me because I feel that the only role belongs to citizens. Elected representatives have the autonomy to vote for the community they represent. Citizen review councils and committees are important but there is a lack of support. It is incumbent on officials to listen to citizens. In years past Tallahassee was beginning to have a developer class, now it has a developer class, which is too powerful. The power is evident and getting out of hand. The role belongs to citizens directly and indirectly. As a government teacher I know there are a variety of civic participation methods. We can turn the stove on, but what gives heat is going to commission meetings and birddogging, and what provides teeth is through citizen councils and committees.

Nick Maddox

A)

Very familiar. The comprehensive plan is the most important document guiding growth and development and protecting neighborhoods, all three – it is the premier, guiding document. Therefore, I want to be sure to get it right and pick the right consultant. The update and hiring process has been open and transparent and citizens have been involved. As a guiding document it helps us find that sense of compatibility such as protecting canopy roads along with needing to make way for 100,000 people coming in the future. Time is flowing but getting it right is most important. Right is better than quick.

B)

I think citizens are a big stakeholder and community engagement is a very good goal to have. Commissioners are representatives, we listen to how citizens feel and balance that with very strategic community-wide needs. I would like to see a balanced menu of how to go about urban infill, suburban areas, and other planning strategies like creating nodes in places like Woodville, Bradfordville, and Fort Braden. We need to hear public outcry – it is part of the process. We make sure we hear from community, consider how we should move, but within policies. We don’t always agree. But we hear from staff, the public, then get on the same page.

Dominique ('Nikki') Danielle Zumbo

A)

I think the focal point is rent control. New facilities attract a lot of business. Yes, inflation goes up and population too. In apartment communities, property managers and investors can not do much to control these things. Growth should be matched by raising wages or lower rental costs. Livability is one general concept to note and ask – are people more inclined to live here? Walt Disney sold a dream, a wish. If comp plan is associated with a plan, then policies will be beneficial to the plan. Something I would like to facilitate is one event every year to bring neighbors together and get to know one another. Commissioners can help with funding, permits, staff, and being in the know. Support engagement events and priorities that put neighborhoods above all else. So many homes for sale but people are moving away. My neighbors with new baby moved to Montana because they cannot afford to live here. People leaving can be avoided if developers and others facilitate growth and care for constituents.

B)

When I was a leasing consultant there was always a special group of tenants that advocate for all, for example, select services from vendor that is not getting done. Residents are the first line of defense and of service. Citizens should have a role and platform to speak on. They can show up to meetings to share concerns, advocating for themselves and for others.

City Commission
Seat 3

David Bellamy

A)

Yes, very aware and has been studying it closely.

B)

There has to be a better way for the City to get citizen engagement and input.  I participated in the event where there was a powerline proposed for the Buckhead neighborhood and the City led community input events. There were mid-level managers available, posters were put up, but questions were met with generic answers.  I didn’t feel like any of the input given was ever going to see the light of day. Another event I went to was for the Northwood Mall property, which was on a grander scale but there were no high-level policy makers, only one City Commissioner.  Ideas were written on a whiteboard and then it was folded up taken with the City reps. I didn’t feel like these were ever seen by people with real say in events.

Groups like ATN need to come out in force and demand that real change take place. It should come from two directions, citizens and groups coming out in force and the City needs to change the way they handle citizen input and make it more efficient. As an example, look at the current City Commissioner meetings, citizens must wait for the end of the meeting to be heard.  It could be a 2 – 6 hour meeting, and then only allowed a 3 minute timeslot to speak and then there is no feedback. There just has to be a better way to get citizen input.

Jeremy Matlow

A)

I’m very familiar with the Comp Plan.  

B)

Over the last few years in making changes to many of the Comp Plan elements, the desire was to look at the Plan in its entirety. With the current growth there is a need to bring everybody to the table, all of our neighborhoods. Many of the current 11th hour fights are due to the direction our Comp Plan has been given. This has caused a lot of conflicts. There needs to be a step backwards to stop the unchecked urban sprawl. It seems almost everything is allowed under the Comp Plan to some.

There must be a better understanding among staff, elected officials, and our neighborhoods to be on the same page, a shared vision. I have not seen the Commission provide any guidance on the Comp Plan or how to manage the growth.

We need to bring everybody to the table, talk about what we need to conserve, the environmental protections and the neighborhood protections we want to see. There needs to be some difficult conversations of where development should take place and how. There will be wildly different opinions but we need to have this conversation.

City Commission
Seat 4

John Dailey

A)

Yes, I am very familiar with it and have been since 2006. The Comp Plan is the guiding document for setting growth and development policy. It was written in 1990 and since then Leon County has added over one hundred thousand residents, and we need to revise and streamline our Comp Plan.

B)

I believe there should be public engagement in every step of decisions on growth and development including soliciting written comments, online comments, and in-person meetings and workshops.

Kristin Dozier

A)

Yes, I’m very familiar with the Comp Plan and have been actively involved with the process, having served on the County Commission since 2010.

B)

Community engagement is the bedrock of our form of government, and citizens should always be included in a meaningful way. I believe we’ve seen an erosion in the citizen’s ability to participate in many of our land use decisions. I’ve advocated for changes in process, and want a workshop to address enhancing our processes. Currently staff holds open house, few citizens show up- most don’t know about the proposed changes, and the commission doesn’t hear about them until later in the process, and then they don’t hear from the public until transmittal hearing. This indicates that our local governments need to do a better job of engaging citizens and stakeholders, and the commission needs to hear from the public at one or more meetings prior to the transmittal hearing. I’d like to see an increase in the notice requirements beyond 1000’. More effective community engagement would benefit the commissioners and provide them with more information for making decisions.

Michael Ibrahim

A)

This was a new area and we discussed what the comprehensive planning process is.

B)

I think citizens should play an important role.  For example, we could have a council of affected homeowner associations that would convene to discuss how to develop a site near them, such as Northwood.  This would get people involved in the evolution of their neighborhoods and public sites near them.

Whitfield Leland III

A)

I am not very familiar with it, but I have been looking at it over the last couple of weeks. I am in total support for meaningful citizen input. The Comp Plan directs development practices for affordable housing and density. We should not have to go vertical for affordable housing in our community. This ruins the character and history of our neighborhoods and communities. We need to change the Comp Plan to ensure affordable housing is addressed to meet the needs of our community.

B)

We should have every say in deciding on growth and development policies. We should provide all of the neighborhood associations with $100K/year each to decide on and implement small projects that benefit their communities. We should provide the resources needed for neighborhoods to help themselves. We should give residents the space to create loving neighborhoods. We need to help neighborhoods and their residents take responsibility for improving their community and for getting their citizens involved. It’s not about what I want and think, it’s about what we want, and reach consensus on. It should not be what the City Manager and staff want.

City Commission
Seat 5

Shelby Green

A)

I am familiar with the comprehensive plan but public engagement is not at the level it should be. The plan does not include a ban on clear cutting trees.  Also, the plan is too uniform and should be more diverse, with more time given to talk about what growth means for each neighborhood in the city. Community advocates voices aren’t represented and the public was not engaged in an effective, equitable and respectful way.

B)

Neighborhood associations and citizens need to be continuously engaged rather than provided shotgun opportunities to participate and provide feedback. The city should recognize that there areas in the city where there are technology barriers to communication and to opportunities to provide input. And then create ways to engage citizens and ensure equitable participation. 

Adner Marcelin

A)

I am familiar with the plan. We need to stick to the plan. Of course we need to protect neighborhoods and we need to invest first in the neighborhoods we have before developing new ones.

B)

We can address inequities in growth and development by including input from the people and the neighborhoods. Currently the Southside is starving for development. And again, the poor do not have access to the internet, social media, money for the newspaper in order to be aware of opportunities to provide input. We need to go to the people and reach them where they are. 

In addition, Tallahassee is home to thousands of college students, a mostly transient population. We need to get their input to identify what it takes to get them to stay in Tallahassee. We need to have plans to transition students into permanent residents.

Dianne Williams-Cox

A)

As a sitting commissioner, I am very familiar with the Comprehensive Plan update process.

B)

All citizens and neighborhoods should have input and interaction with the process. Their input is valuable. Citizens need to understand that the process is collaborative, and to remember that the commission members have a broad view of the issue, and need to take a look at the whole picture. Neighborhoods need to consider the commissioners role in considering the whole picture, while advocating for their individual issues. Individual commissioners don’t represent specific districts in the city but represent the entire city and citizenry. Commissioners are accountable to all citizens of the city, they do not represent one district.