Monday, November 05, 2007

A little late, but it was published online

The Selma News FINALLY published the voters guide online for the election Tuesday. I have wanted to link to it ever since I wrote the answers to the questionnaire. Unfortunately, The Selma News is not as efficient as their sister paper, The Kenly News with their web presence.

Here is my write up.
Troy LaPlante

Address: 505 West Anderson St., Selma
Age: 39
Education: AAS Fire Protection from New Hampshire Technical College
Professional: Fire and rescue, all aspects of protection; private protective security; radio and television broadcast.
Committees, civic clubs, community involvement (past and present): Many years in fire service, Selma Planing Board, Selma Citizens Advisory Committee, Johnston County Local Emergency Management Planning Committee.
Honors and awards: Non listed
Family: Single

Three top issues/problems for Selma and your solutions:

1) Selma’s image and desirability as a place to live, work, own a business: Selma is strategically situated along the major crossroads of I-95 and Highway 70. With the new Clayton by-pass coming by the end of spring 2008 or so, we will be seen as more of a bedroom community for commuters to Raleigh and RTP. Selma has a reputation of being a drug haven, crime ridden, and a low class town. We need to improve the town’s image. There are some good steps that have been taken thus far in terms of cleaning up abandoned and neglected properties. The police department has worked on dealing with the drugs and crime. Those efforts need to continue and be expanded in conjunction with other efforts. The improvement of appearance can take the form of easy, low or no cost efforts that need to be performed first. Image is just one step, however, in attracting residents and business.

2) Infrastructure: One thing that we need to focus on is the improvement of our existing infrastructure. We have a superior electrical system, I am told, but we have 100-year-old sewer lines. We have award-winning designs on water towers, but we have some streets that are unpaved and others that require dodging potholes. Without improving infrastructure and maintaining what we have, how can we consider growth to accommodate more territory? Essential services come first. The electricity, water, and sewer must flow. Police and fire protection must be provided. The priority items are important to society at large. Proper infrastructure is imperative to attracting new industry and residents. We can not have growth without keeping up with demand.

3) Public fairness, legality, and honesty: I realize that there are always going to be issues that are not immediately for public consumption. However, I do believe that being forthcoming with information, public records, and public business is imperative to the success of a representative republic. Ordinances need to be passed legally, and must be ethical. The town can not follow one single individual’s agenda, but must reflect the needs of an entire community. The town has made great strides in the area of financial accountability, but that needs to continue. Accountability, however, does not stop at fiduciary responsibility.

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