From Erica Armstrong, Candidate for Sulphur Springs City Council-Place 1:
George A Moore said “A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it”. My goal is to make Sulphur Springs a town that we can all be proud to call home. And, that others will see that this is a great place to live work and play! I am very proud of our town and all the progress that has been achieved. I love that our beautiful downtown helps to draw in visitors. But I would love to draw them for a lifetime instead of just a visit. I want Sulphur Springs to be the place where my children’s children want to raise their families. I feel that downtown is just the starting place and look forward to carrying the same pride and excitement throughout the rest of the city. I would like to see us attracting new businesses with incentive packages so that we can increase revenue and give our citizens retail choices. I would like to research the creation of controlled volunteer groups to aid in the maintenance and beautification of our parks and other areas throughout the city. I fully support the police and fire departments and would like to help restore morale that seems to be waning. I also want to focus on the senior community and their need for a safe and functioning facility; and look at revamping our parks system and examine our resources to ensure safe places to play in all areas of the city. It has been mentioned that the tax rate has remained the same at 44/100 for many years. This is true. Tax rates have remained the same. However, property values have had a major increase. What a lot of citizens don’t realize is that choosing to approve taxation based on the effective tax rate would bring in the same amount of money as the previous year by effectively lowering the tax rate to compensate for the higher property values. This is the best way to not raise the amount of taxes actually paid by our citizens. While we do utilize tax revenue to fund projects and budget items and increased tax revenue always makes a better situation for city government, it is important for the citizens to realize that there are options when adopting taxation methods. I strongly believe that, if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. This was my determining factor when I was contemplating my run for city council. What a great way to continue to illustrate to my children, and to others, to accept the sacrifice, try to make a difference, and be part of the solution for Sulphur Springs. I tend to be a quiet observer…meaning I like to watch, learn, and study people and situations so that I have a full understanding. I have watched some unpleasant things unfold during this campaign and I am taken back by some of the rudeness and condescending attitudes that I have witnessed…both in the campaign process and in the city government. If I am elected to city council, as in any other area of my life, I vow to treat people with respect…to listen to all citizens of our community and to consider this position an awesome responsibility. I recently read a quote by the late Barbara Bush. She said, “Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people.” I feel that this is the very first step in any endeavor and will most likely determine the path. We should consider this election our map for the road ahead and not just a scrapbook for where we’ve been. You as voters, have an awesome opportunity to select the candidates that you feel would best serve and represent our city and to help lead us down the right path…hopefully without any potholes! I would be honored and humbled to earn your vote for Place 1 on May 5th.