To the Editor:
I’m not going to tell you which mayoral candidate to vote for on June 9, but I am going to tell you which two Democrats you shouldn’t vote for and why.
Mayor Bill Euille has been a member of the City Council since 1993. He was elected Alexandria’s first African-American mayor in 2003. During his tenure as mayor, Mr. Euille has bent over backwards to help developers. He has favored such special interests over the protection of neighborhoods and the town’s history. Real dialogue between the City Council and community has been minimal or absent. He has served 12 years as mayor, and I believe that is long enough.
Then there is Kerry Donley, a former two-term mayor. He has served a total of 18 years on the City Council, most recently from 2009-2012. During his tenure as mayor, the city grew much larger, the city’s budget ballooned, and residential property taxes skyrocketed. Mr. Donley, who works for a local bank, says, not surprisingly, that the answer to these growth problems is still more commercial development.
It’s time to move away from such special interests and focus more on the business of protecting the city’s history and quality of life. Why, for example, does a city of this size and wealth have too few great parks?
As a former vice mayor and native Alexandrian my advice to all residents of Alexandria is to cast your ballot on June 9 for someone new that will take us in a different direction. If history is any guide, the primary will decide who will be the city’s next mayor.
If you vote for Mayor Euille or former mayor Kerry Donley you are handing control of City Hall to developers, to the detriment of Alexandria.