Continuing with weekly questions for the Madison mayoral candidates, Isthmus asks Allen, Cieslewicz, MuÃoz and Sandstrom what city law they would most like to see overturned.
Their responses follow below.
The Daily Page: If you could change or repeal one city ordinance, what would it be?
I would repeal the mayor's failed inclusionary zoning (IZ) ordinance, which is social policy experimentation at its worst. It was bound to fail because there was no serious needs study or discussion of the issues before the plan was implemented. The courts have already struck down rental aspects of IZ, and not many families are living in IZ homes.
Inclusionary Zoning is not a viable affordable housing plan. We need to make funding the Affordable Housing Trust Fund a priority so that the interest generated can be used to fund housing initiatives such as down payment, rent, and security deposit assistance. At the current rate of funding, it will take more than 20 years for the trust fund to reach its $10 million goal.
This mayor ought to be ashamed to be pushing trolleys, which cost $15-$25 million per mile, while not making a commitment to the trust fund. For the cost of one mile of trolley tracks, we can make affordable housing a reality in Madison.
As mayor, I would urge the Common Council to repeal IZ and to join me in making a real commitment to affordable housing.
I would like to repeal the requirement that city officials take an oath to uphold a state constitution that now openly discriminates against gays and lesbians. Until we repeal the marriage amendment, those of us who cannot in good conscience swear to uphold that part of the constitution will take the oath with special language expressing our opposition to it.
I would change the alternate side parking ordinance to be enforced only when snow emergencies are declared. The current ordinance intends to "train" residents during winter months to park their cars such that plows can clear snow from both sides of the street. The rule applies only to areas beyond the isthmus, and mandates that vehicles be parked overnight on the even-numbered side of the street on even-numbered days, and on the odd-numbered side of the street on odd-numbered days.
This ordinance is a constant annoyance during winter for people who need to park their cars on the streets. People will sometimes unintentionally forget, or simply miscalculate on which side of the street they are required to park. The ordinance is heavy-handed as it imposes parking fines, and it is basically unnecessary as it is in effect seven days a week throughout most of Madison regardless of weather conditions.
The city aims to reduce the use of cars as much as possible. Interestingly, folks who choose to park their cars most of the week are forced by this ordinance to use them at least once a day. This is an unnecessary waste of time and fuel.
I would work to enact the following ordinance: On all streets of city of Madison alternate side parking rules are in effect only when a snow emergency has been declared. To not improve the current snow emergency ordinance, but instead to continue to enforce an illegal night-parking fine -- with no snow -- is proof that the current mayor is a crook, a night-wallet burglar.