18 September 2019
Name as it appears on the ballot: Joshua Bradley
Party affiliation: Socialist Party USA; Green Party
Campaign website: jbradleyforraleighworkers.org
Occupation & employer: Hotel Accountant, Summit Hospitality Group
Years lived in Raleigh: 26
1) Given the direction of Raleigh government, would you say things are on the right course? If not, for what specific changes will you advocate if elected?
The Raleigh city government has certainly tried to listen to the concerns of city inhabitants, but attempts to address gentrification, affordable housing and mass transit are always made within the constraints imposed by capitalist development. For example, city councils past and present have talked about the need for better mass transit, but have made zoning decisions encouraging sprawl that place effective mass transit further and further from reality. Developers are allowed to continue the construction of housing for high-end markets while affordable housing is discussed and worried over, but actual construction of affordable housing lags far behind need. There is no attempt to restrict land speculation, which drives up prices and drives out less wealthy residents. A number of things need to change. First, stop approving luxury home construction. The land speculators and property owners can wait until the city can comprehensively address affordable housing. (The definition of ‘affordable’ itself needs to be revisited, as current assumptions leave out people who need housing but don’t meet the percentage of adjusted median income used to define what affordable housing will require in income.) Families living in hotels while developers build McMansions and expensive apartments is not justified if we aspire to a society that provides for all. Second, stop allowing developments to be designed for cars. If ever an incentive was to be given to developers (which in general I oppose), it should be the elimination of the personal automobile as a necessity. The reduction in pollution and the personal savings to homeowners and tenants would be enormous, as well as increased safety for pedestrians, especially children. Much of what we call acceptable development will become increasingly unsustainable as anthropogenic climate change advances, and, equally immediately, open space decreases . We can no longer assume unlimited expansion, and must begin to plan for denser populations and less sprawl. Finally, we have to make the city financially available, both in terms of housing and access to services, for people of all income levels. Increasing housing prices create even more commuter culture, where people who work in the city can only afford to live outside of it.
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