1. Should the city extend non-discrimination protections to include sexual orientation? If so, should an exemption be permitted for religious beliefs?
Yes, the city should extend non-discrimination protections to include sexual orientation (and gender identity). It’s simple matter of human rights. No, an exemption should not be permitted for religious beliefs. The previous ordinance provided a religious exemption and opponents still found the ordinance unacceptable.
2. To what extent would you favor exploration of inter-governmental consolidation?
I would support an update to the study that was done previously or would support a new study being done to determine whether intergovernmental consolidation can create efficiencies, save taxpayer dollars, and/or provide better governmental services.
3. Do you think the city needs a vicious/dangerous breed ordinance?
The city already has a vicious/dangerous breed ordinance that reflects the result of a public process and city commission action in spring 2007. Having not heard any concerns about the existing ordinance I don’t know that any changes are needed at present. Should citizens have concerns about the ordinance, then it should certainly be re-evaluated.
4. Do you think the city needs to do more with gun control?
Like the mayors in Hiawatha and Wichita, at the very least Manhattan’s mayor should support Mayors for Illegal Guns. Also, the city commission could ask RCPD if it has any specific recommendations about gun control measures or ordinances that would be beneficial to the community.
5. Should the city revisit a rental inspection program?
I was disappointed that the rental inspection program was rescinded. Rather than abandoning the entire program I wish we had given it a chance to work and then made modifications to the parts that were problematic. Having said that, this is not a specific issue that I would advocate that the commission bring back for discussion. However, if there was broad based public support for it to be reconsidered, then I would certainly be willing to do so.
6. Should the city build, expand or improve its Parks and Rec Department offices?
Yes. The current Parks & Recreation offices, while functional, are not an ideal working environment. The decision regarding whether to build a new facility, improve the existing one, or modify existing city space to house the Parks & Rec office will need to be made based on the department’s needs and the other demands on the City budget.