As we continue to get over the hurdles created by an ongoing pandemic, unnecessary expenses are the last thing anyone needs. Most families cannot afford unexpected expenses. A 2019 study revealed that 70 percent of Americans have less than $1,000 in their savings account and 45 percent have nothing saved.
So where would the money come from to fix an out-of-the-blue flat tire caused by a pothole or a nail in the road? For many families, this may be a question without an answer. It is the responsibility of the Leon County Board of Commissioners to repair and maintain roads and bridges to protect you from these burdensome costs. I will always vote to invest in this critical infrastructure. In March of 2021, I experienced this first hand. I was driving north on Duval Street and as I crossover Eighth Ave, I hit a pothole. I remember thinking, “I really hope that did not put a hole in my tire.” I was able to make it to my apartment. The next morning, I woke up and got dressed to workout and my car was leaning toward the ground because only three tires had air. Fortunately for me, I had AAA and they were able to give me a tow to tire shop on North Monroe. One tire costs me $150. However, they recommend I get two tires so my car would drive evenly. The roads were not properly maintained and I was out $300. The total cost could have been more like $400, if we include the price of the tow. At the time, I did not have a have job and had not received any unemployment benefits from the state. I was able to dip in my savings to cover the cost. However, I cannot image how I would cover those costs if I did not have money saved.
Going through this experience taught me firsthand how important it is for county commissioners to commit to maintaining one of the most critical infrastructures of a community: roads and bridges.
I believe maintaining our roads must be an annual investment. As you travel to work, your kids travel to school or the family travels around town to run errands, the roads must be in the best possible condition. I vow to invest in infrastructure, so your family does not have to waste money better used to pay important bills, such as rents and mortgages, utility, water, gas and cell phones.
Streetlights are also critically important part of infrastructure, especially for driving and walking at night. These lights make us feel safe and in some cases keep us safe from potential unseen dangers. I will always vote to ensure the safety of Leon County residents.