The Mayoral race continues to heat up, as we are less than a month away from Election Day. We felt that it was critical to get information out to voters in regards to our position on candidates running for office. While we have not endorsed anyone in the race for Mayor, we wanted to set the record straight in regards to a candidate that our organization vehemently opposes: Keisha Lance-Bottoms. This article and others will go into detail about our opinion on why she is someone not to be trusted, and one who will maintain the status quo as it relates to operations of the city. Let us first start off with blight and abandoned homes.
There are close to 15,000 vacant homes and buildings in the City of Atlanta. These properties breed crime, decrease property values, and keep an area from revitalizing. Keisha Lance-Bottoms has done very little during her time as a Councilmember to craft innovative solutions to addressing the issue of vacant homes. Despite the fact that the Code Enforcement Commission has been in existence for almost 4 years, Keisha Lance-Bottoms has not even attended one meeting. In these meetings, the Commission has been able to learn about the budget and process challenges facing all city departments that are tasked with addressing the issue of abandoned homes and littering in Atlanta. It is essentially impossible for her to craft solutions to an issue that she has not taken the time to learn, and study.
Another troubling aspect of Keisha Lance-Bottoms record centers on the appointment of former City Councilman Lamar Willis to the Fulton County Land Bank board. Willis was a long time Councilmember who lost his seat to Andre Dickens in 2013. Among other things, he was found to have committed numerous ethics violations, and was disbarred for stealing thousands of dollars in funds from the child of one of his clients. Despite all of this, Councilmember Bottoms voted in support of Mayor Kasim Reed’s attempt to appoint Willis to the board. The Fulton County Land Bank will have a very important role in addressing Atlanta’s vacant home problem in the future, and it is essential that the most ethical, competent, and honest people lead it. Lamar Willis didn’t fit the criteria, and it was truly telling to see that Councilmember Bottoms still attempted to get her former colleague appointed.
Despite all of this, one of the biggest issues that we have is in the current platform of Mayoral candidate Keisha Lance-Bottoms. Take a look at her website when you get a chance. She doesn’t even mention vacant homes, the issues they bring, and her detailed solution to solve the problem. That should be troubling to anyone living in a community that deals with vacant homes on a daily basis. If one does not have a plan to address the blight, should you really believe that they will somehow solve the issue?
The Georgia New Guard is officially coming out against the candidacy of Keisha Lance-Bottoms for Mayor. We feel that she will be as much of an abject failure as Mayor Kasim Reed has been on the issue of addressing vacant homes. Voters in neighborhoods like Almond Park, Oakland City, Ashview Heights, Center Hill and others need to understand that elections have consequences. Voters in these communities must decide if they are ok with vacant homes bringing their communities down, or whether they want the City of Atlanta to actually hold slumlords accountable. Many of our communities cannot afford a repeat of the last 8 years. Vote no on Keisha Lance-Bottoms for Mayor! There are many other candidates to choose from, and our suggestion is that the voters move away from status quo politics, and decide on a leader that will truly invest in our communities.
Until next time,
Georgia New Guard