Editor’s note: Decaturish and the Tucker Observer have published an Elections Guide, a 76-page e-edition featuring Q&As with nearly every candidate running in our communities. To see it, click here. This special e-edition features candidates running for public office in Decatur, Avondale Estates, Atlanta City Council District 5, Clarkston Tucker and Stone Mountain. There is a PDF version of this, which you can see by clicking here, but due to the format of this e-edition, we strongly encourage you to use the e-reader version.
The Tucker Observer provided each candidate in our local races with a series of questions about local issues. Here are the answers of candidate Shawnette Bryant (incumbent), who is running for Stone Mountain City Council Post 5. The answers have not been edited.
1) Why are you running for this office?
a. I am running for my position as Councilmember, because I want to continue to serve the Citizens here in the City of Stone Mtn, Ga. I love people and also enjoy helping people here in the Community. Continuing my role as a Councilmember, is a choice I made , that I can make a difference as a Councilmember, also giving back to the community to show I care and will continue to help make a difference where we live.
2) What makes you a better candidate than your opponents?
a. My personality and the love I have for the people. I am very passionate about the position I hold as a Council Member.
3) If elected, what are your top two or three priorities?
a. If elected, the two priorities that I am concerned about is having weekly COVID-19 testing done in the City of Stone Mountain for citizens who need and want it. We are behind with this issue, due to the fact it was out of control in 2019. The 2nd priority is making sure people can still stay in their homes without raising the Mill rates in the City.
4) In your opinion, what are the most important issues facing Stone Mountain?
a. The most important issue now is Coronavirus.
5) What is your current opinion of the current Stone Mountain city manager?
a. The City Manager is great with the City Budget.
6) What is your opinion of Stone Mountain’s current mayor and who will you be voting for in the Stone Mountain mayoral election?
a. The current mayor has been the mayor for years. No response at this time.
7) What can the city of Stone Mountain do to better distinguish itself from Stone Mountain Park?
a. Communicate better as a Body with Stone Mountain Park.
8) Do you think the city should use paid parking to capitalize on park attendance?
a. No, the City Racial justice and diversity have been points of conversation over the last year.
9) What will you do to promote racial justice and diversity in the city of Stone Mountain?
a. We need to be more educated on Racial Justice in the City of Stone Mountain, and be more vocal.
10) What do you think of the city’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and what steps do you think the city should take to help reduce the spread of the virus?
a. We, the Councilmembers need more discussions on making the citizens wear their Masks whenever they are in Public. We want to make sure everyone stays safe during this pandemic.
11) What is your opinion of Stone Mountain’s current Downtown Development Authority and what changes would you make, if any?
a. The DDA needs more training. There should be terms set on DDA, giving other citizens opportunities to be on the Committee. New Ideas are needed.
12) If elected, what would you do to support the business community and how would you sell Stone Mountain to businesses considering setting up shop in the city?
a. I will support the Businesses, but the Directors need to come up with ways on how they can receive funds and not depend on the Taxpayers to fund every time they have projects.
13) What should the city do to diversify its revenue streams?
a. More discussions from the Council on this question.
14) Do you think the city of Stone Mountain should implement a “blight tax” to penalize home and property owners who do not take care of their properties?
a. Not at this time during the Pandemic.
15) What is your opinion about Stone Mountain’s current tax rate and do you think it should be higher, lower or remain the same?
a. No, we do not need to increase the tax rate at this time.
16) Stone Mountain has recently decided to move forward with overdue upgrades to city parks. What park improvements would you like to see?
a. I would like for the Council to discuss adding bike trails, walking trails in the park(s).
17) What do you think is Stone Mountain’s greatest strength?
a. A great place to live and raise a family.
18) What do you think is Stone Mountain’s biggest challenge?
a. I do not have an answer for this question.
19) How would you address what you believe to be Stone Mountain’s biggest challenge?
a. No response at this time.
20) If you are elected, do you promise to conduct yourself in an ethical and transparent manner? How would you work to promote ethics and transparency in government?
a. If I am elected for my post again, I will definitely be transparent in the way I handle myself with the Public. The Council needs to have a long term plan, make sure we are listening to the Citizens and what they want to see changes they want to see in the City.
More information about voting in the Nov. 2 election:
Election Day is Nov. 2. Early voting will begin on Oct. 12 and will end on Oct. 29. The voter registration deadline is Oct. 4. To register to vote, click here.
To see a list of important dates in the 2021 election year, click here.
Voters in DeKalb County are eligible to apply for an absentee ballot as of Aug. 16.
To apply for an absentee ballot:
— Visit the Georgia Secretary of State website.
— Complete the absentee ballot application using the state’s official paper form. Use black or blue ink only.
Applications can be mailed to the county elections office at this address: DeKalb County Election office, 4380 Memorial Drive, Decatur, GA 30032-1239.
Applications can also be submitted by fax, 404-298-4038, or email, [email protected]
Voters may send an absentee ballot request for multiple people who live in the same household in the same envelope or email.
If an absentee ballot is not mailed to you, call DeKalb Elections office, 404-298-4020. You may still vote in person, either early or on Election Day.
In accordance with SB202, a new voting bill signed by Gov. Brian Kemp in March, a copy of a voter’s ID is required to apply for an absentee ballot. A Georgia driver’s license, Georgia state ID, Georgia voter card, U.S. Passport, U.S. military ID, employee ID issued by any branch of the federal or state government, tribal ID, or a document verifying a voter’s name and address – including a paycheck, utility bill, or bank statement – are accepted forms of ID.
Early voting begins Oct. 12 and ends Oct. 29. The hours for early voting are Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. There will also be weekend early voting on Oct. 16, 17, 23 and 24. Call your elections office for hours.
Beginning Oct. 12, you can participate in early voting at the following locations:
– Bessie Branham Recreation Center (2051 Delano Drive NE, Atlanta, GA 30317)
– Lynwood Recreation Center (3360 Osborne Road NE, Brookhaven, GA 30319)
– Berean Christian Church – Family Life Center (2197 Young Road, Stone Mountain, GA 30088)
– DeKalb Voter Registration & Elections Office (4380 Memorial Drive, Suite 300, Decatur, GA 30032)
– Tucker-Reid H. Cofer Library (5234 LaVista Road, Tucker, GA 30084)
– Stonecrest Library (3123 Klondike Road, Stonecrest, GA 30038)
– County Line-Ellenwood Library (4331 River Road, Ellenwood, GA 30294)
– Dunwoody Library (5339 Chamblee Dunwoody Road., Dunwoody, GA 30338)
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