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Q&A: City of Montgomery mayor
Incumbent Sara Countryman and opponent Bill Clevenger are in the race to become the city of Montgomery's mayor. (Community Impact staff)
Occupation: Enterprise software sales
Experience: The past 2 1/2 years as mayor has been successful and many of our goals have been reached. We are completing our comprehensive plan and this will allow us a foundation for the future.
What are the biggest challenges the City of Montgomery is facing, and how do you plan to address those challenges?
SC: Our biggest challenges are growth, mobility and infrastructure. We have worked hard to ensure our commercial and residential growth doesn't overwhelm city services and law enforcement. Currently, we are working on upgraded water lines, considering well upgrades, road expansions and new thoroughfares that will easily serve the residents of Montgomery for decades to come. Montgomery is 4 square miles so walking, bike riding, golf carts and scooters are the most common means of transportation and connecting not only downtown but the parks and residential neighborhoods will make being a resident a wonderful experience.
How did COVID-19 affect Montgomery from an economic standpoint, and how do you plan to help businesses and residents who were affected?
SC: A large number of businesses in Montgomery were deemed "essential," which allowed them to stay open but changed the way business was conducted. I am proud to say that when you shop, wine and dine in Montgomery, you will be greeted by the proprietor of the establishment and it was imperative to keep small business afloat. Economically, we fared the downturn rather well due to gas, grocery and restaurant businesses staying open. We have worked with businesses and residents that needed additional time paying for city services, as well as provided businesses with a $250 city services credit if they met minimal requirements.
What is your vision for Montgomery’s development in the next 20-30 years, and how does this compare to the city’s comprehensive plan for development?
SC: Montgomery is experiencing growth in both residential and commercial real estate sales. While growth is exciting, our historical business district is our crown jewel and it is important that we keep our charm while preserving our deep history. The Comprehensive Plan that I began immediately after my election is close to completion and will be the blueprint for our vision for today as well as 10, 20 and 30 years from now. I am honored to be a part of the team that is collaborating alongside the community building and designing our future.
Candidate did not respond to requests for comment.