Our neighborhood business districts throughout the township need real attention and focus.
I will aggressively pursue programs that already exist like, the Pennsylvania Downtown Center, Economic and Community Development Corporations and Business Improvement Districts because we can’t Big-Box-and-Wawa our way to create a dynamic local economy.
Professional service contracts will be put out for bid. I will work with Council to return fiscal oversight powers back to the elected Treasurer and back to the people. Our boards and commissions will be active and engaged and will reflect the real diversity of our community. I will modernize the way our local government communicates with residents by establishing a social media policy and a Community Public Access Channel with video of our public meetings.
I will bring in programs like Habitat for Humanity and Jumpstart to improve our housing stock, encourage home ownership and create opportunities for local residents to invest and develop in Upper Darby.
High taxes are the biggest complaint I have heard from residents. Within Delaware County, our tax rate is surpassed only by Millbourne and Colwyn Boroughs. High taxes make it difficult for seniors to age in place, decrease our property values and deter new families from moving here.
Since serving on Council, I have advocated for the basic good government policy of putting professional service contracts out for bid. The chair of the Upper Darby Republican Committee also heads the firm of the township solicitor, so it is not surprising that the current leadership will not change its stance on this policy.
It is important to note that our current mayor (who was appointed to that office in 2009) has also served on Council since 1988 (when he was appointed to take his father’s place). In three decades, he has proposed 8 budgets with township tax increases and has voted for at least 20 tax hikes.