Listen to Highland Residents

It isn’t enough for the City Council to listen to residents who come to Council meetings. It isn’t enough to respond to calls and emails from residents.

During election season, all the candidates are busily knocking on doors and attending community events. Too often, this stops the day after the election.

Truly listening to residents is an active process. It requires reaching out to people and asking what they want. Asking what worries them. Listening to the response and acting on it.

This doesn’t mean always doing what people want. Partly because different people want different things. What it does mean is understanding all the different opinions and taking them into consideration when making a decision.

Listening also means working to ensure residents know what options are under consideration.

If I tell you the city is considering a plan to build ten new homes adjacent to your neighborhood, hear to your opinions, and then switch to a plan to build six homes without giving you a chance to comment, that isn’t really listening.

If I tell you we need to raise $700k to fund public safety and that this cost will be spread across the entire city, hear your opinions, and then consider a plan to have all of that funding come from just 75% of the city, that isn’t really listening.

Nobody is perfect. When I think our current city officials have made a mistake, I tell them so. I explain why I think it was a mistake and what I think should happen next. If I didn’t respect them, I wouldn’t bother.

If you trust me with a seat on the Highland City Council, I hope I can rely on you to tell me when you think I’ve made a mistake. Because I guarantee I’ll make some, and we can only learn from our mistakes when we know we’ve made them.