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Click to see my answers to the Pikes Peak Association of REALTORS...

Thank you to the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors for the thoughtful questions!

1. Why do you want to be elected/re-elected to City Council? I am a scientist. I look at the world around me and approach challenges from that perspective. As a Chief of Geosciences and geophysicist, I regularly use evidence and data to make consequential decisions that affect public safety as well as billions of dollars of infrastructure. Looking at what obstacles we in Colorado Springs are likely to face in the future, whether it is wildfires or water allocation issues, a data based scientific approach is something I will bring to the table. It is also something that I see lacking in our current City Council.

2. How have you been involved in the community? As we all know, District 3 boasts some of the best public spaces and events in Colorado Springs. On any given day, you may see my wife Kelly and I hiking in local parks like Red Rock Open Space or North Cheyenne Cañon. You may see us attending weekly summer concerts in Bancroft Park or at one of the numerous events here in the District such as Territory Days. After experiencing so much that our community has to offer, I look forward to this opportunity to give back by serving on City Council as your representative for District 3.

3. What is your vision for your district? In the future, I see the residents of District 3 continuing to thrive. I want to see their property values go up even higher. I hope to see the continuation and growth of the already robust arts and music culture here. I also want every citizen, the ones both in my district and throughout all of Colorado Springs, to feel safe and welcome.

4. What is your vision to continue strengthening the core of the City (Downtown)? For Downtown to thrive in the future, we must continue to view it as both a neighborhood and a destination. Continuing and maintaining the beautification of the core of the City will be a top priority in order to attract people to both live in and visit Downtown. Well-reasoned density decisions and maintaining safe and clean streets will keep our Downtown in demand.

5. What is your vision for strengthening and growing the local economy/jobs? Maintaining low taxes and robust city services, improving public safety, and working toward identifying and attracting a high wage workforce all could help grow the local economy.

6. What are your thoughts on housing attainability? Housing attainability is a national issue. Even so, I don’t think it is the government’s job to artificially reduce prices. I do not support any government picking winners and losers. Flooding the marketplace with units and/or allowing over-densification reduces property values of those who live here now in service of those who may (or may not) move here in the future. Modern, well-maintained infrastructure and free market economics are how you keep Colorado Springs ready for responsible growth now and into the future.

7. Do you support or oppose real estate transfer fees/taxes? What you are asking about is the State Documentary “Fee” which was passed in 1963 and not modified since. The current tax (“fee”), set at $0.01 per $100 keeps money within the county and generates revenue while at a level that is not over-burdensome on those paying the tax. For example, right now a buyer would pay $45 on a $450,000 property. This seems reasonable to me. There is a State of Colorado legislative initiative (2023-2024 #3: Establishment of a New Attainable Housing Fee), which would transfer all locally paid transfer taxes to the State in order to pay for “affordable housing.” While I do not support the State legislative initiative because I support leaving revenue in the county where it was collected, it is not something the City Council will take up.

8. What are your thoughts on short term rentals? The short term rental industry, like any other business, needs reasonable regulation. This attempts to balance the interests of the neighbors with the interests of the short term rental owners. Because Colorado Springs is a destination for both leisure and travel, short term rentals will always be in demand. The City must be nimble enough to allow for growth in rental demand but understand the problems that may come with it.

9. Why should the real estate industry support your candidacy? The citizens who work in the real estate industry have the same concerns about our city that we all have. How do we make sure our loved ones are safe in case of wildfire? How do we care for our homeless neighbors while maintaining a safe and sanitary society for everyone? How do we balance the need to accommodate and plan for inevitable growth while keeping unbridled growth in check? As Colorado Springs continues to grow, one of the most important tasks for the City will be the allocation of water. The 128% rule most recently passed by the City Council is not a fair allocation of this precious resource in my opinion. The real estate industry should support my candidacy because I support studying and truly understanding how much water we have as well as the fair distribution and allocation of our water.

10. Would you accept the endorsement of the REALTOR® organization? If elected would you accept a contribution from the Colorado REALTORS® Political Action Committee? Yes, I would accept the endorsement of the REALTOR organization. I am happy to represent all citizens, businesses, and interests of District 3.

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