Getting to know Ann Arbor City Council candidate Alice Liberson
ANN ARBOR – Alice Liberson (D) is running for the Ward 3 city council seat. This is her first time running for public office.
She has lived in Ann Arbor for 18 years. With degrees from U-M and MIT, she works as a small animal veterinarian and a management consultant.
She is married with two stepdaughters. She loves her dog, Satchel.
The following interview was conducted via email.
In your opinion, what are the main issues in your ward? How do you propose to solve them?
Walking door to door, talking to many people in every precinct of Ward 3, the number one issue is our roads. Council majority has been focused on their pet projects, and direct time, money, and staff resources to their own issues. Now that they can no longer ignore our complaints, they are campaigning on their new plan to fix them. I will prioritize the core responsibilities of local government: infrastructure and basic services. As conversation moves beyond roads, people talk about the larger issue of feeling excluded from the decisions affecting our city. They do not believe their concerns, on many issues, are being heard. I propose to listen, and to be available to talk, and to communicate.
What do you feel are the biggest issues in Ann Arbor?
Affordability: There are a number of lower income areas in the 3rd ward that are stressed by fees and taxes. The increase in water rates for single family homes ignores the fact that many single family home owners are not rich. People are worried about the ability to remain in their homes.
Development: We need to consider the impact of development on our neighborhoods.
What do you love about Ann Arbor?
People. Parks. Cultural and educational opportunities provided by U of M.
What could Ann Arbor do better?
The decision-making process in council needs improvement. Council majority forces their positions without interest in listening to what others could contribute. It's not necessarily that the decisions are wrong. We just don’t work out the kinks before we make them. For example, the problems created by the poor contract over the Y lot could have been foreseen, saving the city a lot of money (at least a million dollars) as well as time and aggravation, if it had been more thoroughly discussed.
Why did you decide to run for City Council?
To bring discussion, better process and more civility to Council.
If you could describe yourself in one word, what would it be?
Describe what you think it means to be an Ann Arborite.
It means something different to everyone. Talking to people in many neighborhoods, of different backgrounds, races, economic status, has driven this message home.
For more information about the upcoming election, including polling place locations and voter tips, read: What you need to know ahead of Ann Arbor's Aug. 7 primary.
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