City Council at Large Candidate Questions for Incumbent Brooks Hawley - Republican
There's a lot of concern from city residents about activities on Jackson and State Street. Do you consider those streets problem areas and if so, what should be done about them?
Any street is a problem where people are involved in activities that break the law. This problem deals with a socioeconomic impact. The city police department needs to continue to work with the residents and landlords to attack this situation. Residents should be helping by calling 911 if they see any suspicious activity and not send complaints to their landlords or neighbors. If any resident would like to meet with the police department, they would be glad to work with the public.
What level of code enforcement do you favor to deal with seemingly problem properties?
I favor city code officers and firefighters to be out on the streets doing surveillance of houses to make sure that the neighborhoods are being maintained. It is also the responsibility of the landlord to keep their properties up to code in the City of Batavia.
How should garbage collection be handled in Batavia?
Just the way it is. Garbage tax was removed from the city taxes. People now have a choice on who they want to do business with. ARC still has 80% of the business in the city. Now that ARC is not the sole provider for garbage collection, this has provided growth for other businesses. We have had one or two new garbage collection companies form since the change.
What should be the city's role in economic and job development be in Batavia?
To create and encourage investment in the city’s commercial and industrial areas. Provide direction and momentum to businesses that are interested in investing in the community. Maintain a business and investment friendly atmosphere to encourage economic development.
If the choice came down to either A) raising taxes and maintaining the city's own police department and/or fire department; or, B) consolidating police protection with the city or going to some form of volunteer fire department, which option would you choose?
I am very supportive of our local police and fire departments. I feel that it is important to keep them intact. As long as they are providing a service that is adequate and meets the needs of the residents of Batavia at a reasonable cost to the taxpayers.
Are you satisfied with how the city is run? Are there changes you would like to make? If you were going to change one thing about how the city operates, what would it be?
The administration needs to be more people-friendly and more available to the community. They could offer interviews with the media to improve open communication. "City manager and head of the departments." I would also like to have meetings in each district for city council to meet and hear the concerns of the residents of Batavia.
Why have you decided to run for City Council and why should people vote for you?
Experienced, I have been in office for two years. Reliable, you can count on me. Open minded, willing to hear new and interesting ideas. Good listener, I feel that this is very important when a person holds a public position.
A lot of softball answers here... compare this with Jim Rosenbeck's response.
Furthermore, to take issue with candidate Hawley, for a community the size of the City of Batavia [having less than 16,000 population] to have a police force of 35-40 officers [I believe it was 38 at the census of 2011], and a full time professional fire dept is beyond necessary, I'd even say ludicrous. And the taxpayers are footing the bill.