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NAME: Joshua W. Adams
CANDIDATE FOR: Huntington City Council District 6 (The largest geographic council district in the city. It includes portions of the Southside and South Hills area above Ritter Park, Enslow Park, several streets off of Washington Boulevard, sections of Walnut Hills and Beverly Hills, Stamford Park and streets off of Norway Avenue to the city's eastern boundary.)
HOME CITY: Huntington
HOME COUNTY: Cabell
EDUCATION: M.S. Occupational Safety and Health, B.S. Environmental Science - Marshall University.
CURRENT OCCUPATION: Operations Manager, Contractor- U.S. Department of Energy; Environmental Science & Engineering Officer United States Army Reserve; Real Estate Investor.
OTHER WORK HISTORY: Environmental Safety and Health Management-Multiple Industries; Compliance Safety and Health Officer-U.S. Dept. of Labor - OSHA; Aerospace Medical Service-West Virginia Air National Guard, Space Systems Operator-U.S. Air Force.
CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS: Marshall University Big Green, Military Officers Association of America, Marshall University Speech and Hearing Center Scottish Rite Scholarship Fund, Gary Sinise Foundation, Board of Certified Safety Professionals.
FAMILY: wife, Ernay; sons, William and Brendan
PERSONAL STATEMENT: I am proud to have been born and raised in the tri-state area, and I am a product of the wonderful traits and teachings of my upbringing. After experiencing living in other cities across the nation, and even having the opportunity to relocate elsewhere, my family chooses Huntington as our home. My experience has provided insight on the challenges we are facing in our community and has ignited a desire within me to challenge the complacency exhibited in our city and state.
1. What are your suggestions for the long-term financing of Huntington's government?
We need to provide avenues for business to thrive in our city. Grants provide temporary opportunity and loans burden us with debt. We must have responsible revenue, and that comes from business and strong employment opportunities. With our population in decline, the citizens, my constituents, cannot be the primary funding vessel looked to when budget shortfalls arise.
2. What are the most important problems in your district (or city for mayor and at-large council candidates)?
Degradation of our neighborhoods, opioid addiction, and vagrancy.
3. Should the city bring back a curbside recycling program? If so, should it be funded with a levy vote or by expanding the county's program?
Opportunities for recycling should be explored, but not by placing additional financial burden on the public.
4. What more needs to be done to encourage new housing construction in the city?
We have to mitigate the abandonment of existing homes and structures. Provide more incentive for residency in Huntington. Offer home improvement funding opportunities for home owners.
5. How would you continue to fight the opioid epidemic? Do you support the harm reduction program?
We must disrupt the supply and demand of drugs throughout our community. Enhance ramifications for drug dealers, especially out-of-state suppliers. I do not support the harm reduction program in its current form.
6. What more could be done to help tear down dilapidated houses?
Fix the root causes leading to dilapidated houses as a start. Pride and improvement is contagious. Offer programs to potential home builders and work with lenders to roll site cleanup into construction funding. Address issues with existing programs.
7. How will you address Huntington’s dwindling population?
First you have to identify the reason(s) for the exodus. Huntington is not alone, this is a state issue. Take action to address the vagrancy and homelessness, rampant drug use and increasing theft.
8. How will you continue to encourage the decrease in crime throughout the city?
Implement a citizen hotline quick reaction network. Work across multiple fronts to attack and stem the drug availability in our city. Realign our resources to focus on identified targets. Liaise with agencies at all levels of government to assess real, applicable statistics and monitor the effectiveness of their actions.
9. Do you think staffing levels for the city’s police and fire departments are adequate, too low or too high? If you think changes are needed, how would you accomplish those?
Comparing the funding of our departments to other like cities, there does not appear to be an obvious lack of funding. However, shortfalls within our ranks is still a very likely possibility. I would direct my effort to develop a focused study of our forces and allocate available resources to benefit the overall effort to cleanup Huntington.
10. The state of WV government recently put all finances and purchases online for the public’s review. Do you support a similar thing happening in Huntington?
I support absolute transparency.