Since we as Tech students are going to be directly affected by the results of the mayoral election and the policies that follow, it is important to take an interest in the election and vote on Nov. 3.
Kasim Reed is the candidate that best represents Tech’s interests. Reed has comprehensive plan for change within Atlanta that would benefit Tech students. His plan for addressing crime includes an addition of 750 police officers to Atlanta PD. This will be paid for in part by cost-cutting measures within the city, such as scaling back pension liabilities and cutting employee overtime, but much of this cost is proposed to be covered by an increase in property tax for Atlantans.
We disagree with this part of the platform. We hope that the necessary increase in police will be covered by an increase in sales tax or other means that also tax the many people who commute into Atlanta and hope to be safe. However, we hope these measures will be more immediate than candidate Lisa Border’s suggestion that we fine the surrounding counties. This plan is intriguing, but such cooperation would take a long time to implement and we need change now.
We do agree that cooperation between city of Atlanta and the surrounding counties needs to improve, and we believe Reed’s experience as state Senator will help facilitate this. With his extensive connections around the state, Reed has the power to work with the state legislature on Atlanta issues.
One Reed’s most appealing stances is on transportation. He supports the necessary development of the Beltline trains as a means of city transit. Reed also has acknowledged that Atlanta is a hub city for the Southeast region and supports the idea of a high-speed DC commuter train. Reed also intends to expand MARTA to be easier to access in the larger reach of the city.
One of the more interesting parts of Reed’s platform is his proposal of a program to keep inner-city youth in school by sending reformed ex-cons into the schools and teaching them to stay away from drugs and crime.
We have high hopes for progress through Reed and support him for mayor. We hope Tech students will support him at the polls, but even more so that they will go vote.