Focused on Affordability
In a healthy community, people can afford to work, commute, and live comfortably. A lesson I learned years ago, however, is that affordability includes more than just housing. As a councilor, I’ve sought to reduce our cost of living, improve the availability of jobs, attract retail to ensure competition and low prices, limit local taxes and fees, and make it easier for developers to provide a variety of housing choices.
If elected Mayor, I will continue these efforts while working with Loveland Affordable Housing, the Loveland Habitat for Humanity, and our developers to accelerate housing availability for below-median income families and reduce housing costs for everyone.
People want to be able to care of themselves and their families. The loss of a paycheck and low opportunities to earn more are very real concerns. It was not too many years ago, during an economic downturn, that my wife and I were feeling the very real danger of losing our own incomes. City government has a role to play in creating an environment that attracts new businesses and retains the ones we have. Every year, most cities lose 10 to 15 percent of existing jobs, and economic growth is necessary just to replace those jobs, not to mention increase job opportunities.
Ultimately, a concern for a business-friendly environment is a concern for citizens and their families, and small businesses are the backbone of our local economy. If elected Mayor, I will continue to help them grow by reducing red tape. By continuing a strong partnership with the City’s Economic Development Department, the Loveland Chamber of Commerce, and other business organizations, we will attract, retain, and strengthen the business community to produce more job opportunities for our residents.
Just as a family has financial obligations and works within a budget, so must a city. To unite Loveland, we must work together to build a budget based on the services citizens expect. Throughout the past five years, I have put a great deal of effort into developing the City Strategic Plan through implementing a revised budgeting process. I have also helped developed a Fiscal Contingency Plan, which came in handy during 2020 as we all dealt with the financial impacts of COVID-19.
If elected Mayor, I will push for the implementation of a Fiscal Capital Investment Plan in line with both the City Strategic Plan and available funding. We must be realistic with our city budget and have an honest discussion about what we can afford to do and what we cannot. This needs to be a “family” discussion, and kicking the proverbial can down the road, hoping things will somehow work out, is not being honest.
We all want to preserve the wonderful environment we are blessed to enjoy in Loveland. For many of us, the Loveland recycling center is a weekly trip. I know my wife reminds me weekly of the expanding list of items we can recycle. Living in Colorado creates a natural sense of water conservation, as well, and that’s something at which we must continue to improve. Increasing the use of renewable energy is a no-brainer if we recognize that our sources of energy for home and business must also be solutions for reliability, financial sustainability, and environmental responsibility. This is not a political issue, and if elected Mayor I will make it a priority to use our resources wisely and create economically viable energy solutions.
People deserve well-maintained streets and sidewalks, ADA-compliant buildings, timely snow removal, uncongested traffic, plentiful bike lanes, and bus routes with well-located terminals. They also deserve properly functioning water and sewer lines and a power grid that’s reliable city-wide.
I know all too well the hazards of poor infrastructure, however. When my wife and I lived in the Chicago area, one of us had to be the spotter for potholes while the other drove! If elected Mayor, I will work to secure funding for the underground and aboveground work necessary to update our downtown to the 21st century. We must address our infrastructural needs, so business owners will invest in the area and create a downtown district we can all enjoy.
People should also feel safe - and be safe - when walking our streets, shopping in our stores, playing in our parks, and sleeping in their homes. For several years I lived in an area where this was not the case. My wife and I moved our family to a safer community and remained there until we moved to Loveland, another safe place to live.
Loveland residents enjoy a fire department that has earned high response ratings, saving hundreds of dollars per year in insurance rates for homeowners. We also have an emergency medical system highly trained in providing care when accidents strike our family members. Our Loveland Police Department is committed to sound policing and the protection of all of our citizens. Finally, our city is home to so many first responders who restore power, clear snow, fix broken water mains, and handle dozens of other safety incidents quickly to ensure the safety of our families. As Mayor, I will work to strengthen all public safety services, so that Loveland remains a place where people want to work, live, and play.
Aging with Dignity
People value their independence and self-sufficiency. Debbie and I have both looked after aging parents that have since passed on, and we know there are struggles we all deal with at some point in life. As your elected Mayor, I would make this an area of great concern. I am committed to increasing housing options, transportation services, and community engagement opportunities to address the needs of our senior citizens. I firmly believe people of all ages should be respected.
Don has or now serves on the following Boards and Commissions to assist him in understanding citizen perspectives.
Northern Colorado Regional Airport Commission (Chair)-2yr
Loveland Communications Advisory Board- 3yr
Citizen Finance Advisory Commission-3yr
Ad-Hoc Special Budget Committee (Chair)- 3yr
Police Citizen Advisory Board -4yr
Open Lands Advisory Commission (past)-4yr
Golf Advisory Board (past)-4yr
Economic Development Strategic Plan Stakeholder Group- 1yr