We need inclusion — not just someone pushing their own opinion. People can see that is not how you roll.
– M on Madison after viewing Ward 2 Candidate Forum
Ask yourself who you want to represent you: Someone with years of action making Hyattsville a nicer, safer, more neighborly place to live or someone who has continually drawn division among Hyattsville’s residents? Do you want to elect someone who has promised to represent our diverse neighborhood by listening to others or someone who wants to promote their own agenda, thinking that their opinions are better than others’? Do you want someone whose end goal is to serve Hyattsville or someone whose goal is higher office?
I’m not running to further my own political career. My feet are firmly planted in Hyattsville. For years now I have been serving Hyattsville by bringing my neighbors together for block parties and neighborhood meetings, helping advise the council on the direction our police department should be headed. I have been connecting neighbors to city staff to help them out or organizing groups to help neighbors with yard work or clean-up. I have been developing relationships with city staff and council members to better help the residents of Hyattsville. I’ve been reporting on the important events that happen in Hyattsville.
As a council member my goal is to represent my neighbors and have their voices heard, not my own. Ask yourself, who is the candidate who does the most listening, not the most talking? As a Hyattsville resident, my goal is to have our council meetings be civil and respectful. Who is the candidate who has spoken most calmly and clearly about all of the issues that face Hyattsville, not just the one they are most interested in?
In the end, vote for the candidate who is going to represent YOU on council and not themselves.
In the past 12 years, Hyattsville been more home to me than any other place that I have lived. While most of our family resides elsewhere, we have found new family here in Hyattsville. Our neighbors are people that we have shared fun, food, drinks… but also our joy and our grief, our love and our loss. Hyattsville people have gone above and beyond for my family and I want nothing more but to be able to do the same for them. These are people we have come to rely on to not just watch out for our kids, but also help raise them. I can’t imagine living anywhere else after what I have found in Hyattsville.
It’s true that everything changes and so must the people and places we love; some even say “you can’t go home again.” Change can be positive or negative and we have to be active if we want to see positive change. Part of that change is development in Hyattsville.
The mayor and council have taken a great first step into finding proactive solutions to the lack of affordable housing in the area- I truly believe that incentivizing the positive change we want to see is a practical and effective solution. The city’s matching grant program for facade improvement has been hugely successful. I think using a similar model for affordable development is wise, but I think we can take additional steps.
Montgomery county has a very successful Inclusionary Zoning program that has created over 10,000 unites since 1974. Now, while Hyattsville and Prince George’s county is undergoing an enormous amount of growth, is the time to work with the county to put similar programming into place.
Why is affordable housing necessary for Hyattsville? We already know change is happening, but we can make that change positive. What I do not believe would be positive change is to start pricing whole demographic groups out of our neighborhoods. Hyattsville is a vibrant place to live; it’s inter-generational, inter-ethnic, international, with a mix of socioeconomic levels. Once generational or socioeconomic groups get priced out, Hyattsville will become less diverse and lose many of the characteristics and strengths that we now associate with our great city.
Let’s continue to watch out and care for each other. But let’s be proactive and make that change now.