by Robin Kemp
Alfred “A.D” Dixon previously served as councilmember and mayor pro tempore for the City of Jonesboro. His brother is Cameron Dixon. A native of Myrtle Beach, S.C. and a graduate of Mundy’s Mill High, Dixon has lived in Jonesboro for 18 years, eight within the city limits. He has attended Clayton State University. His goal has been “to make youth involvement key to the overall direction of Jonesboro.”
Candidate Survey: Alfred Dixon
Why are you best qualified as a candidate at large?
As former mayor pro tem and councilmember I have the experience and knowledge to do this job successfully. I have a pulse for the community. I am passionately engaged and ready to do the work for the people.
What are the FIVE most pressing issues in Jonesboro, in your opinion?
- Revitalizing Main Street
- Building affordable housing
- Hiring a full police force
- Teen programming/outlets (skate park, adventure course, etc.)
- Workforce Development
What is the ONE issue you would tackle first? How would you go about solving the problem?
Every major decision needs to start with the citizen. An engaged and informed community operates best.
What has the city done RIGHT/improved over the past 4 years?
They increased the mileage [millage] rate and Made council work sessions and meetings available by zoom.
What has the city done WRONG/failed to improve over the past 4 years?
There is a difference in communication and engagement and there has been a severe lack of engagement from the city. I believe in making decisions with the residents of Jonesboro.
Define “transparency” in your own words.
Openness and honesty.
What THREE services does your city need most right now?
- Speed bumps/traffic calming
- Teen programming
- Monthly LISTENING SESSION for ward residents to share concerns/ask questions
Describe the city’s current racial climate.
25% WHITE / 75% BLACK AND BROWN
What do you think homeowners want/need?
Homeowners want to feel safer , cleaner environment and more vibrant which would increase home values. We recently increased the millage rate which has increased everyone’s tax burden. We need to increase the homestead exemption rate so that it wouldn’t burden our residential home owners while ensuring corporations and for profit entities still pay their fair share.
What do you think renters want/need?
Renters need more educational opportunities to learn how to buy and own home and they actually need a home to buy in the city of Jonesboro. They want more attractions and destination
What do you think business owners in your ward want/need?
Businesses need to be able to benefit from the work of a “Workforce Board”. Their goal is to create and support a skilled pipeline of talent that allows Jonesboro residents to access and grow their careers, as the city grows. Times are also changing we need to ensure our citizens
How would you improve North Main Street?
Every major decision needs to start with the citizens. I would form an advisory board which would consist of members from the business community and residents that would work together to deliver ideas and plans on what improvements look like on N. Main St.
Will you make yourself available to the press immediately before and/or immediately after every council meeting?
Will you support greater representation of diverse faith communities at city functions (e.g., non-Christian invocations, interfaith summit, etc.)?
Have you accepted campaign donations from anyone who does business with the city? If so, who and how much?
Should the city incorporate solar power and electric car chargers in the new city center complex?
Will you change city trucks/cars that aren’t used for heavy-duty towing, etc. (such as Code Enforcement/Public Works/City Hall) to electric/hybrid models?
Where would you cut spending and where would you increase it?
MORE: City-sponsored events, Sidewalks, Street lights, Experienced police officer recruitment, Small business assistance, Personal services, Meals, Public relations, Employee training, Historic preservation, Energy efficiency, Teen programs/resources, Code enforcement, Professional interpreter(s), Elections operations, City fleet fuel costs, Walkability, Bike lanes, Lee Street Market
LESS: Consulting fees, Drug interdiction
How would you grade the city on each of the following?
- Returns calls/texts/emails within 24 hours: A
- Openness/transparency: C
- Responsiveness to citizen concerns: A
- Open-door policy for residents: D
- Ease of small-business permitting: B
- Current cityscape/built environment: C
- Job creation: C
- Fiscal responsibility: A
- Stewardship of city resources: B
- City-sponsored events: A
- Resources for teenagers: F
- Drug activity: D
- Racial reconciliation: D
- Housing stock: C
- Affordable housing (rent): D
- Walkability: B
- Tree replenishment: C
- Noise abatement: A
- Police responsiveness: A
- Party houses/Air BnB enforcement: C
- LGBTQ+ friendliness: D
- Religious diversity: C
- Small business support: C