Chris Dobson, Candidate for Mayor
1. Term Limits – please respond by March 14, 2019
Last November, voters approved term limits for the Arlington City Council. What is your opinion of these term limits?
Term limits - I am for the term limits amendment voted into place by the citizens of Arlington and will work if elected to keep them unchanged for at least 2 years.
2. Transportation – please respond by March 21, 2019
Please describe, including price maximums to taxpayers, your thoughts on public transportation.
My thought on public transportation is that we will, as a community, need it, and so designing a system which meets the needs of our community is incredibly important. In order to meet the needs of the community we must first understand those needs. In this way VIA has been useful in allowing us to begin to collect the data necessary to create a mass transit system, however rather than paying a company to own the vehicles I prefer Uber like systems that makes use of cars owned by others. I believe we can introduce in Arlington a rideshare program, comprised of Arlington drivers and riders, that meets the capacity of needs while collecting the data necessary to tailor our mass transit system to be as efficient, efficacious, and cost effective. After we get that data on rider needs we can then begin looking at adding other capacities that better meet those needs through other modes of transport. I do not have an estimate on price except to say that I don't want this to be a half or quarter cent sales tax program so less than $12million but I'd guess $1-3 million range is more likely the size for the immediate future.
3. Communications – please respond by March 28, 2019
If a constituent e-mails you a question or comment on an issue where you disagree and asks you for a response, will you respond to the constituent? Why or why not?
Yes of course, I would respond to the email. I might be alone in the candidates in believing that I am not objectively correct. Others disagreement is not an insult to me, but an opportunity for learning. I am more than willing to incorporate others ideas into or have them supplant my own ideas in order to create the very best and inclusive policies for the people of Arlington.
4. Taxes (Part I) – please respond by April 4, 2019
Currently, Arlington has 1/4-cent of sales tax that could be used, but is not used. What, if anything, do you see yourself approving to place in front of the voters, for uses for the 1/4-cent of sales tax? Why?
Did not respond.
[[ Taxes (Part I) – please respond by April 5, 2018
Currently, Arlington has 1/4-cent of sales tax that could be, but is not used. What, if anything, do you see yourself approving to place in front of the voters, for that 1/4-cent of sales tax? Why?
I believe that the current quarter cent tax proposition on the ballot is an absolute waste of ballot space and the 8 year term is irresponsible. Road repair and maintenance should be fully funded within the budget authorized by the city, so that the residents understand the degree to which we spend money to subsidize car ownership and transit all ready. Now what would I do with that quarter cent is probably where I seperate from other candidates. I feel like that amount, last time I checked ~$13mil, could be used to encourage people to engage with the city by allowing each voter a say in where that money is spent, not by providing a simple up or down vote, but by allowing people to vote on which department they would like their portion, as determined by turnout percentage, of that money to be directed. In this way each voting citizen can determine for themselves which department of the city most needs or would most appropriately handle these funds. I have attached an image to help explain the spectrum of public involvement which echoes Mr. Weber's assertion that the city relegates citizens to the sidelines. ]]
5. Taxes (Part II) – please respond by April 11, 2019
Currently, Arlington is experiencing almost double-digit property tax evaluation increases. What do you feel is the appropriate tax rate that should be levied upon the citizens: 1) a rate a little below the rollback rate, 2) the effective tax rate, 3) the same tax rate (even if above the rollback rate), or 4) something else? Why?
Did not respond.
[[Taxes (Part II) - please respond by 04/20/2017
So voting on taxes seems to be a far greater incentive for voters than voting on a couple of names for any particular office. My suggestion for property taxes, if we are to return as much power to the residents as possible, is to essential freeze the amount of property taxes received by capping the amount of dollars and adjusting the tax rate each year to ensure that even as property values rise no one is forced from there homes. Arlington assesses both a residential property tax and a business property tax and so these rates could be moved individually to ensure that property tax rates remain at the same rate or lowers as more taxable properties come on line. Then each year Arlington residents could vote if they would like to increase the total property tax revenues. ]]
6. Issue – please respond by April 18, 2019
What is the most important issue the city council is facing? Why?
Did not repond.