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August 12, 2019

How I approach growth and development

As long-time resident of Sandy City, I’ve watched the city grow as more and more people choose to make this beautiful community their home. These observations are part of why I chose to run for Sandy City Council this year where I hope to represent ALL of District 4, to be sure we are effectively looking at every aspect of growth; what it means now, and how we plan for the future.

 

Like many of you, I too am concerned with the impact this growth will have on our city. My husband and I chose Sandy as the place we would raise our children for very specific reasons. We value safety in our community, outdoor recreational opportunities, commercial areas that address our needs within reasonable proximity of our home, and a well-planned transportation system that helps to keep us out of traffic, to name a few.

 

Growth has a significant impact on all things, such as traffic, air quality, water supply, employment, housing, and recreation as a few examples. But with awareness comes the opportunity to educate ourselves on the possible solutions so we may be proactive with our decisions and support the growth in a way that best serves Sandy and maintains the quality of life we have all come to know and expect. My number one priority will always be to represent the people who call this city home.

 

‪I am also concerned with developments that are not the right fit for the areas in which they are proposed, and I believe any solution needs to balance the needs against the consequences. We first need to ensure any proposed project fits in with the surrounding neighborhood, and that we have planned adequate infrastructure, allowing for sufficient ingress and egress. We must also understand the impact of an increase in traffic to the immediate area, and how parking and walking routes to schools may be affected. We need to be cognizant of the strain on utilities and water, and also on area schools. We need to monitor our public safety sector to ensure we maintain and acceptable number of first responders to cover the needs of the city. I believe each project needs to be individually vetted to achieve a balance before I would be able to come to any decision on any request to change from current zoning. 

 

My professional expertise as a residential real estate agent gives me a broad perspective on the issues that matter most to the people who choose to buy a home in Sandy. What I bring as a real estate agent is not a bias, but instead a wealth of conversations that have come with this professional experience. I’ve talked to people about where they want to live, why they’ve chosen Sandy, what matters most in choosing their home’s location, what they’re passionate about, and how they see Sandy City changing. I understand the factors that affect property values and as a result, protecting your property values will always be at the forefront of my decisions. I believe my viewpoint brings a fresh voice to this dialogue. In fact, I feel I add depth as a result of my professional experience.

 

I’m going to be your voice on Sandy City Council and I want to hear your ideas about how we can achieve our goals together.

 

August 7, 2019

Vote in the Primary Election

The primary election results are just 1 week away and EVERY VOTE MATTERS!

 

Your vote this primary election means more (statistically speaking) because voter turnout is typically much lower than in state and federal elections, so the candidate you would like to see elected needs you to vote.

 

Municipal government impacts our lives so much more than any other level of government. This is why it’s important to have your voice be heard by returning your ballot and voting for a candidate who best represents your family's interests.

  • Return your ballot by mail. Ballots must be post-marked by Monday, August 12th. Remember to sign your ballot's envelope before sealing.

  • Return your ballot to a secure drop-box location until 8pm on Tuesday, August 13th. Local drop-box locations are on the west side of Sandy City Hall and at the Sandy Senior Center. Remember to sign your ballot's envelope before sealing.

  • Vote early in-person from 2pm-8pm on August 7th, August 8th, August 9th and August 12th at the Sandy Senior Center or Draper City Hall. Remember to bring valid ID.

  • Vote in-person on Election Day from 7am-8pm on Tuesday, August 13th at the Sandy Senior Center or Draper City Hall. Remember to bring valid ID.

I am proud to be on your ballots, and I will work everyday to represent your family’s interests as a Sandy council member.

 

July 25, 2019

My view on the Tax Increase

Many of you have reached out to ask my position on the proposed 34% property tax increase. I appreciate the question because it should be considered when deciding where to place your vote for Sandy City Council District 4.

 

To answer the question directly, I do not support the tax increase of 34%. I have been to all city council meetings where I heard presentations from all department heads, and supporting information was not provided nor requested to substantiate their claims of need. The proposed budget also includes more than $500,000 in one-time expenses. I don’t believe raising taxes that will be collected year over year for a one-time expense is the responsible solution.

 

Sandy has been a very well run and managed city for years and I would like to see that continue. I fully support maintaining the quality of life and amenities we currently enjoy, and will review all stated needs, but I want to see the data that supports these requests, and exhaust other avenues for additional funding (including making cuts where possible) before ever agreeing to a property tax increase. I'm concerned for the precedent this large increase may set and raising taxes should be a measure of last resort. I don't think we're there yet.

 

Sandy City will hold a Truth in Taxation hearing on Tuesday, August 13th at 6 p.m. at City Hall where you can come and voice your support for, or opposition to the property tax increase.

 

June 4, 2019

My response to the Sandy City Fluoride Overfeed Final Report

 

As a resident of District 4 (the only district to be affected by the fluoride overfeed) I feel the importance of addressing this issue directly. I have completed a full read-through of the Sandy City Fluoride Overfeed Final Report which revealed MANY deficiencies with the city’s response. My biggest take-away, however, was that no one, from the Mayor to the Deputy Mayor, and the Chief Administrative Officer to the Public Utilities Director, acted with any sense of urgency in responding to the matter in the initial days of the event. It is clear to me that this lack of urgency put the response plan at a major disadvantage and the city was ineffective in managing the situation because they were constantly running behind the ball.

While this report was helpful in pointing out some of the more obvious failures with the city’s Emergency Response Plan, such as the need to specify who will be responsible for communicating with whom to reduce miscommunication and misunderstandings, the city failed to follow the plan as it was written. Therefore, a better written plan wouldn’t necessarily have helped in this particular situation. The report concludes by making a judgment that “this investigation did not reveal that Ward, Mayor Bradburn, or the City Administration hid information from the public.” However, a “do not ingest” warning was removed from the public notice, as well as language related to damage to home plumbing due to corrosion, and the Deputy Mayor made a decision to not increase public awareness with a media announcement even though the Director of Public Utilities believed it needed to be done. All of this suggests the city made attempts to minimize or downplay the severity of the hyper-fluoridation event, so to me the facts are in conflict with the report’s conclusion.

 

It would be irresponsible to overlook anything for the sake of not wanting to rock the boat or ruffle feathers, so to speak. I don’t view this as an exercise of assigning blame, but rather assigning responsibility. Without responsibility and accountability, there is no reason for changes to be made. I’m afraid to think about what might happen if Sandy were to experience a similar incident in the future, let alone a larger disaster such as an earthquake, unless we call for accountability from those charged with protecting us and demand that they value residents’ interests above their own.

 

I believe in the fundamental separation of powers between the council and the administration, and I also believe the council should exercise their duty of oversight regardless of who sits in the Mayor’s office. I agree with some of the criticism of previous councils regarding a lack of oversight of the previous administration, and I would like for those mistakes to not be repeated with this administration, or future administrations for that matter. At some point, all elected officials need to understand that doing the job they were elected to do is not for personal gain; rather, it is in the best interest of the public that they serve. I also believe it is essential for the viability of this city that we work together as city leaders to solve these issues, and it begins with creating and environment where mutual respect can exist. I intend to be a part of the solution.

 

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© 2019 Paid for by Brooke D'Sousa for Sandy City Council