The Atlanta City Council president position is on the Dec. 5 runoff ballot. The council presidency is an at-large position elected citywide. The president appoints council committee chairs and serves as acting mayor when necessary. The Reporter asked the candidates, Felicia Moore and Alex Wan, for their biographies and positions on Buckhead issues.

Felicia Moore

Votefeliciamoore.com

Occupation: Real estate broker

Felicia Moore.

Previous experience holding elected offices: Atlanta City Councilmember

Other community service experience: Past member of the Board of Governors for the Alzheimer’s Association of Georgia; member of the National League of Cities; past president and current board member of the National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials (NBC-LEO), a constituency group of NLC, and a past chair of the NBC-LEO Foundation; member of the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA); co-founder and past president of the Georgia Municipal Black Caucus.

What is motivating you to run for the City Council presidency?

I’ve served 19 years representing the hardworking families and small businesses of Northwest Atlanta, including parts of Buckhead, making our neighborhoods safer, cutting our property taxes and stabilizing our city’s economy when we needed it most. I want to do for all of Atlanta what I’ve been doing for NW Atlanta as a proven voice of reform.

What role do you see Buckhead as playing in the city’s civic life?

As someone who’s had the distinct honor of being a Northwest Atlanta homeowner for over 30 years and representing some of the most vibrant and historic Buckhead neighborhoods for nearly 20 years, I strongly believe Buckhead is the premier Atlanta civic destination. Buckhead business leaders have ably led Atlanta’s economic growth for decades and largely contributed to Hartsfield-Jackson’s status as the world’s busiest airport and the Southeast’s largest economic engine. I see no reason to fix what isn’t broken.

Are you satisfied with the Atlanta Police Department’s efforts to fight neighborhood crime? Would you suggest any other strategies?

I do think there is more we can do, together. We need to fully staff out our already approved number of police officer positions, continue to fight for pay raises for our first responders so we can keep the best train officers in Georgia working right here in Atlanta, and decrease police zone sizes so we can decrease response times. I’m also a big supporter of programs that help our police officers move in from Griffin, Lithonia and Douglasville to live in the communities they are patrolling – it helps morale, builds relationships and helps decrease crime.

What is your position on the proposal for a new park capping Ga. 400 in central Buckhead?

I will be honest with you and say I’m known for being a stickler about costs and deadlines, so I haven’t reached a final decision on the deck park, but I really like what I’ve heard so far. I certainly understand the need for a world-class city to have a world-class signature urban design and green space. I’ve kept up with the BCID presentations and am very excited to see what the planning and design phases offer. As our next City Council president, I would be proud to help make the new park a reality for our families and businesses.

Describe a policy or program you would enact or improve that would directly benefit Buckhead.

I’m incredibly proud to have worked directly with Mary Norwood the last seven years to cut property taxes for Buckhead homeowners and business owners, fighting gentrification and fighting for a fairer and more affordable tax burden for our families. In addition to making sure we keep taxes fair, I’m extremely committed to making our neighborhoods safer, and I’d like to work with our Buckhead neighborhood associations and NPUs to push the city to fully hire out all of our already approved police officer positions and decrease our zone sizes to decrease response times to emergencies.

 

Alex Wan

AlexWanforAtlanta.com

Occupation: Director of Development and Alumni Relations, Emory University

Alex Wan.

Previous experience holding elected offices: Atlanta City Councilmember, District 6, 2010-2017

Other community service experience: Leadership Atlanta, Class of 2001; Leadership DeKalb, Class of 1993, Board Chair 1999; Piedmont Park Conservancy Board, 2010-present; Olmsted Linear Park Alliance, 2010-present; Little Five Points Community Improvement District Board, 2015-present; Morningside Lenox Park Association, Board, 2008; For the Kid in All of Us (children’s charity), founder

What is motivating you to run for the City Council presidency?

I want to ensure that we continue applying the tight fiscal oversight that I brought to City Council in 2010 that has led us back to solid financial footing so that we don’t make the same bad decisions as the previous council. I also want to “build the team” with the new members as quickly as possible so that we are better prepared for deliberations and are able to stand up against bad initiatives and proposals. Finally, I want to make sure that City Council creates a forum where all stakeholders have a place at the table.

What role do you see Buckhead as playing in the city’s civic life?

Buckhead has always and continues plays an integral role in the city’s civic life. I have always admired how the residents, business community and civic organizations have actively engaged in shaping the quality of life in the area. In many ways, it can serve as a model for other communities in the city, especially those areas that are now increasing in development/density along its commercial corridors, of how urban planning can and should be done.

Are you satisfied with the Atlanta Police Department’s efforts to fight neighborhood crime? Would you suggest any other strategies?

One of the first priorities must be to fully staff our police force. We continue to face challenges in recruitment and retention, and I have been working with my colleagues and the administration to address the compensation issues that have been one of the primary factors in that challenge. I also believe we need to continue building out our crime-fighting technology (security cameras and license plate readers, sensors, etc.) as support for our officers on the street. We also need to continue putting pressure on the court system with regards to helping us keep our chronic offenders off the street.

What is your position on the proposal for a new park capping Ga. 400 in central Buckhead?

While I think the proposal and concept is intriguing, the price tag is certainly jaw-dropping. I would certainly support the project provided there is a feasible way to fund it, knowing that there will be limited financial capacity on the city’s side.

Describe a policy or program you would enact or improve that would directly benefit Buckhead.

Of personal interest to me are the various proposals for the Piedmont Road corridor improvements included in the “Buckhead REdeFINED” recommendations to enhance vehicle, pedestrian and cyclist safety, and even extending those efforts further south into Midtown. Given the unfortunate recent fatal accident of a pedestrian in the Piedmont/Lindbergh area, I would love to work on finding funding to address the dangerous conditions in this corridor.

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