Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

MSA-Sponsored Mayoral Debate 10/26/04 Summary

27. October 2004

by Kimberly Klanow:

Mayoral Debate
Tuesday October 26, 2004
Mayor John Hieftje
Mayoral Candidate Jane Lumm

INTRODUCTION
Hieftje: He is pro-environment, wants to work with the students, and supports a campus task force. He has an open door policy so that anyone can meet with him.
Lumm: She wants to have meetings with students quarterly as well as improve resident relations in Ann Arbor. She wants to work on issues regarding students such as MIP’s, tailgating, and the porch ban.

ANN ARBOR NEWS ENDORSED LUMM
Hieftje: Not surprised he was not endorsed. He does not have a very good relationship with the AA news
Lumm: She is surprised by the endorsement. She is a moderate republican in a 70% democrat- 30% republican city. She thinks she will get along well with the democratic members of city hall. She likes to give the people a choice and thinks that Hieftje did not receive the endorsement because he trivializes and minimizes the AA News.

PROPOSAL 2
Hieftje: Wants to defeat Proposal 2
Lumm: Will vote no on 2. She thinks the language is vague, and she supports domestic partners.

BUILDING HEIGHTS IN ANN ARBOR
Lumm: She encourages growth. She thinks that building in the downtown area should relate to the historical buildings that are already there, keeping consistent with the plans of downtown. She does not support the “greenbelt” in Ann Arbor.
Hieftje: He is an advocate for the “greenbelt”. He wants to keep Ann Arbor from becoming overbuilt. Regarding the density downtown: he things there is a need for taller buildings. There are certain areas in downtown that he has set aside for higher density areas.

MIP’S FOR STUDENTS
Hieftje: He thinks it is invasive to breathalyze someone walking down the street. Wants the police to back off of students.
Lumm: She realizes that the police have to enforce state laws, and that the police and DPS are trying to make students lives safer. However, the students need to have good judgment too.

PATROIT ACT
Lumm: The city council opposed it when she was part of city council. She is more concerned with Ann Arbor issues like the YMCA building, she does not really have a stance on the Act, but if you would like her opinion she is happy to learn more about it and let you know.
Hieftje: He is against the war in Iraq and the Patriot Act; he thinks it is too invasive.

PARKS:
Hieftje: It is very important to him to buy park space
Lumm: Thinks the city did not tell citizen were their money was going regarding the Bluff’s Park purchase.

2 YEARS AGO WHEN LUMM WENT TO MARY MARKLEY AND ASKED FOR VOTERS ID’S
Lumm: Asking for ID’s is not allowed, she was just checking to make sure people were at the correct voting site. Some people’s addresses had changed and proper adjustments needed to be made.
Hieftje: What Lumm did was inexcusable; he thought it was intimidating for voters. There were over 100 complaints to city hall about it.

COUCH BAN AND PROPOSAL 1
Hieftje: Wants to defeat proposal 1. Fires on inside couches can be just as damaging as couches outside on porches. He grew up in AA and has enjoyed couches on porches.
Lumm: Does not support the couch ban. She would rather put city resources and police to a better use than worrying about couches on porches.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING COMMISSION
Lumm: Under Hieftje the tax rate has increased. Now there is a tax collection fee. Need to think about priorities.
Hieftje: Costs have gone up, such as healthcare, so need to raise fees just to pay for things. There already is a task force and affordable housing is being worked on.

WASHTENAW HILL AREA BEING DEEMED A HISTORICAL AREA/ MEDICAL MARIJAUNA
Hieftje: Not in favor. Homes in that area are well maintained, and to consider it a historical area it must truly be historic. In favor of medical marijuana if it can make people who are suffering feel better.
Lumm: She does not support the Washtenaw hill area becoming a historical area.
It is hard to be opposed to medical marijuana, except for the legal issues.

GUN VIOLENCE
Lumm: not a whole lot we can do about federal laws
Hieftje: We are limited by the things we can do federally. Does not think people need handguns. Guns should be restricted, but hunting guns are alright.

Crime in AA is down; 10% in this year alone.

CLOSING REMARKS
Lumm: Wants to have better city and university relations. Will take a different leadership approach. The city needs more inclusion. Regarding current policy making only a select few are involved.
Hieftje: The city government is inclusive. Density issues are being addressed and Dean Doug Kelbaugh of the Architecture School is assisting. Bluff’s Park was a relevant purchase. Wants to change the date of student choosing housing for the next year, prefers the date to be in the spring, not the fall. He does have an open door policy, so if you would like to speak to him, just contact him.