I want to clarify a couple of items in last week’s April 12 farragutpress article, “Markli spells out mayoral platform,” in which I stated that prior to my 2009 run for Alderman I had never considered running for public office. I was then misquoted as saying “the Mayor (Ralph McGill), aldermen and other citizens practically begged me to run.”
In fact, I did not mention names, and the mayor at that time was Eddy Ford. So the sentence the way I phrased it was “the Mayor (Eddy Ford), an alderman and several other prominent citizens practically begged me to run for Alderman in 2009.” Previous to my 2009 announcement for candidacy, I had never met Mayor McGill and he never asked me to run.
The article correctly stated that I “would not support a property tax under any circumstances.”
But then it went on to say incorrectly that my “key focal issues would include public safety and the Town’s parks and recreational offerings.” The records of my remarks verify that what I actually said was that I would focus on public safety issues; specifically roads and bridges and infrastructure like the old narrow county roads that have been declared by Town staff to be so deficient that no further development will be permitted on them until they are upgraded. And only after they are corrected should we focus on secondary issues like parks and recreational offerings.
To be clear on that last issue, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen has no shortage of advocates for parks and recreation, but I maintain that the first obligation of Town government must be public safety.