Tammi Thurm on the Issues Facing Greensboro

COVID-19

The pandemic has harmed every single person in the Greensboro community, though some more than others. Throughout 2020, my top priority as a Councilwoman has been to support people, businesses, and other organizations suffering through this ongoing crisis. Fortunately, there is hope on the horizon in the form of vaccines and the prospect of further economic relief from the state and federal governments. However, the scars of the coronavirus will persist and take years to heal. In 2021 and beyond, I will remain committed to ensuring that our City government continues to support our community, so that we can emerge stronger than ever.

HOUSING

Access to safe and affordable housing for all people in Greensboro is a goal that we can achieve. After extensive work, we just passed the 10-year housing plan focusing on affordable rental homes, neighborhood reinvestment, access to homeownership, and permanent supportive housing. These are the building blocks we need to ensure economic opportunity and wealth building for all our citizens. I am committed to moving these forward and seeing these goals become reality by putting the plan to action, rather than having it sit on a shelf somewhere for 10 years.

JOB GROWTH

In my first term in office, I have worked hard to make Greensboro a place where small businesses start, grow, and thrive. This is what our working families need in order to sustain middle-class job opportunities. I have supported the creation of opportunity zones to help ensure that the whole city benefits from economic development, not just a few ZIP codes.

Greensboro is home to tens of thousands of college students. Too often, our students graduate and travel to other parts of the state or country to put down roots. We must continue to market Greensboro as a home for entrepreneurs with the support system of a large city, while offering the benefits of living in a city our size. We need to incentivize staying here after graduating so our communities can benefit from a new generation of innovative young professionals.

We must also offer our pre-college-aged young people opportunities to gain the skills needed in this 21st century economy. I am working with community partners to establish summer job programs for at-risk youth, which can create a road to successful adulthood.

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION 

For many residents of District 5 and beyond, Greensboro’s public transportation system is essential. We can continue to improve these services by piloting micro-transit routes within the city and moving away from the traditional “hub-and-spoke system” that tacks hours on to ride times. Currently, a cross-route in District 5 is being reviewed to serve as a pilot program for such improvements to public transit. In the coming years, this may lead to further routes that lead to decreased transit time for Greensboro residents.

PUBLIC SAFETY

For too long, our first responders and law enforcement officials have been tasked with too many jobs. As a City and as a community, we must do more to invest in social support programs, mental health, and other key services that keep our neighborhoods safer and mitigate the need for law enforcement response to every incident. I’ll continue to work with community members, leaders, and public safety professionals to improve trust and build new relationships. Law enforcement neighborhood policing and other similar programs can help achieve that goal. Further, some of the best ways that we can go about making Greensboro safer is by working to ensure all residents have access to safe and affordable housing, that our city offers many good job opportunities, and that our young people have a pathway to higher education or job training. Those continue to be my priorities for 2021 and beyond.

Tammi Thurm’s Accomplishments

  • Co-author of the Council’s apology for the November 3, 1979 Greensboro Massacre – promoting healing by acknowledging our failures and establishing scholarships in memory of those that died, so that we will be reminded of our past and learn from it.
  • Initiated the New Garden Road Strategic Plan that will guide future decisions regarding properties in that corridor going forward, working with both neighbors and businesses to shape the characteristics of that community for the future.
  • Co-sponsored the “local preference” policy, giving a leg up to local businesses for City contracts. This promotes local economic growth without costing the City any additional dollars.
  • Co-sponsored the “Good Repair Ordinance,” which created minimum standards for business and non-residential properties. This is improving the safety and appearance of buildings across the city.
  • Prompt constituent services. From getting stop signs installed, cleaning up stream banks and overgrowth in neighborhoods, repairing/up-fitting run down neighborhood parks that had been ignored for too long, and much more. I have paid attention to the little things that make a big difference to residents right in their own neighborhood.