Justice Reform

Our jails are full of people charged with marijuana possession. Keeping these non-violent offenders in our jails costs the county, city, and taxpayers millions of dollars. There are several current reform proposals that I wish to support and advocate for on the municipal level.


I also want to work as a representative in the second largest city in the state for restoring voting rights to felons once their sentence has been completed. Working with state lawmakers and others, we can change the lives of many who have served their time and now wish to be an active, contributing member of society and our state.


There are many areas of justice reform that can bring progressive solutions for real change, and I am eager to work with the citizens of District 7 to make these a reality.

Giving New Opportunity

Advocating and working with Shelby County & the State Of Tennessee for changes in processes/reissuing of drivers licenses to people who simply can’t afford to have them reinstated after having them suspended. Some great things already happening in the right direction! Example: The Memphis City Council hosted an event that gave about 600 Memphians the chance to get back on the road legally with reinstated driver’s licenses.


As a part of the city council’s MLK50 initiative, the council allocated about $600,000 for the Driver’s License Reinstatement and Diversion Amnesty program. Through the program, Memphis drivers in the Drive-while-you-pay program, as well as those with suspended and cancelled licenses, will receive amnesty. We need an advocate on city council that will press for more money for these types of things that can change people's lives.

A New Era for Code Enforcement

I want to propose that Code Enforcement become its own stand-alone city division so that its operations and funding can be reformed to be more effective in fighting blight and other neighborhood concerns.


Right now, Code Enforcement is under the Public Works division. Public Works tries hard to meet the needs of the citizens, but I believe that Code Enforcement isn't getting the attention or resources it needs. It isn’t staffed or funded as it should be, or as effective as it could be as a stand-alone division.


Code Enforcement works hard, but leaders/representatives of our districts need to follow up and help put another set of eyes on issues reported to 311 and Code Enforcement. Let's fight blight, hold landowners and building owners accountable, and work together to help clean up our neighborhoods.

Restoring Police & Fire Benefits

Most solutions proposed to bring underfunded pension plans back into balance have involved freezing the benefits for present workers while moving new hires to more viable plans. As well, cost of living adjustments were reduced or eliminated altogether. But the Memphis pension plan was just too far gone for those remedies to work. It lost nearly 20 percent of its investments during the Great Recession, and the rebound in stocks hasn’t closed the gap. In 2008, the plan showed a surplus, but a year later it was short by 20 percent.


Members of the two public safety unions have started petitioning to have voters make the choice at the polls. The unions say the proceeds from the city sales tax increase — from 2.25 percent to 2.75 percent — would be used to restore and maintain the health care benefits to levels they were in July 2014 and to restore and maintain the pension benefits.


We need to ensure those who put their lives on the line to keep us safe have the best benefits and competitive pay.

Neighborhood Preservation & History

I have talked with many community organizations, and they say that they get pushback from city council on historical overlays. I am an advocate for this and will be a friend to anyone who comes to City Hall that wants to have a historical overlay in their area. As someone who has served on a community development corporation board as president for two years in a historical neighborhood, who has purchased and renovated and currently lives in a c. 1859 home, I understand the significance and the importance of historical overlays and protecting our rich Memphis heritage in history.

Developers should always seek community and neighborhood feedback on projects that are proposed. Once they have input from those it will affect, they should review their proposal and try to SINCERELY work with businesses and residents alike. Take the feedback they get and then alter their plans to address these concerns. Once complete, they should be given back to the citizens, business, and stakeholders via another public meeting for feedback and overall consensus of approval. Another opportunity we have is we need to make developments are “done with heart”. People may not be able to afford some types of development and we should not force them out of their homes just to build a shiny new building. Let’s work with them and come up with a compromise that is good for everyone, even if it means spending a little money. After all, developers receive tax breaks from the citizens and businesses of this city... people they might be affecting directly. I think smart development would incorporate a neighborhood where you can live in a new development, but also have housing options that are nice, up to code, and well-maintained for those less fortunate.​

Restoring Trust & Protecting Oversight - Police Department

I want to advocate against state legislation that has recently come to light that would scale back police oversight. We need to build bridges between our police department and our communities. We need to hold our police department accountable and they need to hear the concerns and issues from the citizens as much as we need to hear from them on programs, their concerns, and issues.


Most of all, We need to ensure concerns from citizens are heard, acted on, and then measured - accountability & trust is everything.

Technology & Efficiency​

We need to invest in technology that will improve efficiency within our city departments, divisions, and elsewhere.


In recent conversations with Memphis police officers and other City Hall employees, I have been told that our technology is out dated and not efficient. Efficiency = Money = Cost. And all of this is paid for by OUR TAX DOLLARS.


We need to insure that we have up to date methods and technology to help city employees do their job accurately and efficiently. The cost of updating would be significant, but would save money in the long run.

LGBT Advocacy

As a member of the LGBT community, I wish to propose protections for LGBT people who work at any employer who operates within the City of Memphis.


We also need to invest on a municipal level into LGBT homeless shelters. Our city faces a major issue where LGBT youth are banned from their homes and families. This often results in mental health concerns, resorting to drugs/alcohol, and sadly... suicide. We can help prevent this. We can allocate funds and invest in our youth by giving them a safe place and work with local colleges, tech schools, and community organizations to ensure they have an opportunity to succeed and get on their feet.

finance 2 jadi LINE

Tax Breaks & Incentive Reform

Major reform is needed in our PILOT programs and where we are focusing their moneys in our city. So many areas of our city have been left in the dark and I want to shine a new light on them. Once we reform these tax breaks and incentives, we need to study each project closer and then weigh it all. Then, hold accountable those who don’t hold up their commitment. Each request should be considered as follows:


Are the request specific?

Are they measurable?

Are they assignable?

Are they relevant?

Are they time based?


I want to be an advocate that goes to city, county, state, and even federal economic development events and opportunities to advocate for my district and bring jobs back into our corner of the world. Right now, current representation doesn't even show up to community meetings when invited. They don't hear the stories of struggling people within their district or their issues with unemployment or low wages. We do not have representation that invites new business/industry to our district for a tour or site-seeing trip that would showcase the great opportunities right here in District 7. I want to be that advocate.

Helping Families & Improving Education Access

I want to work on developing a program where high school students and college students can utilize MATA to get to/from school.


As an only child to a single parent, my mom sometimes was not able to take me to school. Sometimes when she did, she was late for work. Parents shouldn't have to worry about making sure their kids get to school on time and safely. Parents sometimes work two or three jobs to make sure their kids have the best, and we need to help them as a city.


We need to ensure that these hard-working families in our neighborhoods and their kids have stress free access to better themselves and get a good education. I recently proposed this idea to a Shelby County school commissioner at a town hall with Mickell Lowery and she said she believes anything is possible and she is a single mother who said this is a good idea. But one thing we both agreed on was we need to fix our broken bus routes and system to make sure they are more effective and on time and accessible to areas that need it most.


This program is possible, and we can make it happen.

Supporting Minority Businesses

I want to strive to increase bids that the city of Memphis gives to our minority owned businesses. We have made great progress in this area as a city, but I feel we have some missed opportunities.


I also want to advocate against outsourcing big Memphis projects to out-of-town architects and developers. We need to give our local architects and investors a chance to build within their city. 

More Heart for the Homeless

As someone who has lived near the Union Mission for nearly four years, I can say I have met some of the nicest, sweetest people who don't have a place to call home. They walk by my home everyday and it's sad that we don't do better to help lift these people up and give them a better opportunity.


We need to invest on a municipal level into more shelters & better job programs and advocate a partnership with local tech schools, colleges, and businesses to help get our homeless on their feet.

Home Ownership & Neighborhood Revitalization

I think we should, as a city, invest in community development organizations and community programs that aim at increasing homeownership. Home ownership lowers crime, gives people pride, and is favorably viewed by business and industry when they are scouting to open or locate in a particular area. It also helps neighborhoods and citizens protect their neighborhoods from out-of-town developers who grab homes, flip, and raise prices where Memphian can’t afford them. 

Crime

Crime is one of the biggest challenges we face in our city. Our police department is understaffed and over-worked. Crime will never be under control until we make sure we are fully staffed and our officers are able to have a work/life balance so that they are at their best while on the job. I will fight to make sure that we continue our "Best In Blue" campaign to recruit the finest officers. Competitive pay and benefits will help make Memphis a place where people will want to come to work and will do the work with pride.


Crime also needs to be met with accurate data reporting. We need to ensure that we are receiving and categorizing crimes properly. I want to work closely with our police department to ensure this and work closely with oversight committees.


Technology will also have a big part in helping us fight crime. I am a big advocate for "gunshot location technology". This technology detects gunshots by "listening" and can be installed on all telephone poles or cell phone towers in areas that gun fire/crime is rampant. Once heard, it sends a signal instantly to the police department.


I also want to advocate for our neighborhood watch programs throughout our city to form more of them and support those that already exist. There are several ways and technologies that can help these organizations be more effective. You can be assured I will support these causes and any ideas they may have to help make their communities safer.


Crime reduction really starts at home. Making sure families can be there to help raise and be there for their children. Bringing good paying jobs to Memphis so that parents don't have to work two or three jobs will have a positive effect on our children and the paths they choose. Summer job programs and activities also are very important to deterring crime and I will support funding to make sure we have more of them in our city.

Infrastructure: Utility Bills & MGLW

One issue we face being brought to city hall is MLGW's request to increase rates to Memphians due to aging infrastructure & systems. While we have been lucky to not see many increases from MLGW over the years, is asking the tax payers to foot the bill the right thing to do? Here are my thoughts:


Cell phone companies that are now 20 years old or more have to deal with aging towers, increase cost in operations, and much more. Yet, we see our cell phone bills & plans decreasing in cost year by year due to them being proactive and creative in their solutions to keep cost low and delivery a quality product.


It seems to me people weren't asking the right questions to MLGW years ago, and even now. Maybe if we would have reviewed how to save Memphians money 4, 5 even 10 year ago, before this "dire need" of an increase came about, we could have been a step ahead and made the necessary moves to save money NOW and not need ask Memphians to foot the bill. That's the problem, we are being reactive instead of proactive. If we knew the system and infrastructure and cost were going to go up, why didn't we look at alternatives and GREEN energy solutions years ago? It's time. I want to be a councilman for the people who will ask the right questions and come up with creative, progressive solutions. (See my Facebook post on green energy water propellers we could harness from the river!)