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Election Day is approaching very swiftly and I would like to tell you more about why I should be your choice for mayor of the city Lancaster.
My name is Donnie Birchfield and I’ve been in Lancaster for 10 years when I married a local girl and relocated from North Carolina.
I am now a local Baptist pastor and I understand how important first impressions are. I can relate to all types of people and have no problems listening and working together to improve our city.
Lancaster is a great town to raise my family but I can see some areas that need improvement.
Our most pressing concern in the city of Lancaster is jobs. I have opened a small business in Lancaster and I can personally attest to how difficult and often tedious the process can be.
We should be encouraging businesses to locate in the city. I am very interested in the See Lancaster project and like the concept of the concerts that are being offered. However, I would like to see this expanded, rather than only 8-10 concerts per year, why not offer year round events in all price ranges that would include more of our residents?
The hospitality tax is a great asset and must be used to bring people to Lancaster – creating tourism. I envision a large civic center that could host all types of events throughout the year and really draw crowds from all over North Carolina and South Carolina. Wouldn’t it be nice for our community playhouse to have a permanent home to perform in?
Concerts, conventions, sporting events, etc. could be held there as well. How many times do we drive to Charlotte or Columbia to attend such events when we could be spending our dollars here as well as playing host to hundreds or even thousands of visitors?
More hotels and restaurants would be excited to locate in the city, thus creating jobs and of course revenue. One such arena is in Florence.
I also believe in entertaining the idea of merging the sheriff’s office and the city police department. There are automatically overlapping services and expenses, such as dispatching, vehicles, office space, etc. I am a realist and I know decisions cannot be made overnight, but it is past time that we look outside the box for some ideas or else we’ll continue to have the same issues.
I believe we can do better and with my business background, managerial and negotiation skills, it is quite clear that I am the clear choice on Nov 2.
If elected as your next mayor, I will offer an open door policy. I would encourage citizen comments and offer monthly forums or open office hours for the citizens to come to me with their ideas or concerns. Our future depends on all of us working together for the betterment of the city of Lancaster. I have kind regard for our current Mayor Joe Shaw and his long tenure of service.
However, when attending a recent City Council meeting, it was quite apparent that he has lost his power and a few council members are actually running our city. One council member even disrespected Mayor Shaw verbally.
We need City Council to be on the same page and currently it is extremely divided. People may disagree but respect and order should be maintained at all times.
I look forward to serving the city of Lancaster residents and would greatly appreciate your vote for mayor on Nov. 2.