Decision 2022: Meet the candidates for Louisville Metro District 9
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville Metro District 9 includes the neighborhoods and cities of Beechwood Village, Bellewood, Bowman, Brownsboro Village, Cherokee Gardens, Cherokee Woods, Clifton, Clifton Heights, Crescent Hill, Druid Hills, Greenleaves, Irish Hill, Lexington Road Preservation Area, Richlawn, Seneca/Rock Creek and a portion of St. Matthews.
The district’s Democratic councilman, Bill Hollander, isn’t running for re-election in 2022. Instead, the Democrat on the ballot will be Andrew Owen, a small business owner of a real estate investment company with a background in urban planning and finance.
Owen says his priorities would be social equity, rebuilding the relationship between the Louisville Metro Police Department and the community, and public infrastructure.
His Republican opponent Alexandra Martindale describes herself as a moderate Republican. She is a human resources manager for Kentucky Bourbon Barrel with a background in musical theater, construction, bourbon and workforce development.
Martindale says her priorities would be safety, infrastructure, and affordable and diverse housing.
On public safety, Martindale says the key to building back the police force is for leadership to pay more, train more, and publicly support them more. She also had an idea for improving the LMPD-public relationship.
“That’s working with judges to keep criminals in jail,” said Martindale. “When criminals are back out on the street within 2-3 days, if there’s someone who talked to the police about them, they’re going right back over there. Those people are in danger. So, when we’re not keeping criminals in jails, especially violent offenders, it’s no wonder people don’t talk to the police.”
Owen says officers need more support from their government, including higher pay, especially as an effort to keep officers from defecting to other agencies. Once better staffed, Owen says LMPD could “rebuild that faith and trust.”
“I would like to have cops spend a certain amount of time on the beat having a requirement that they meet with people,” Owen said. “Go to a high school basketball game. Go to an event at a community center. Interact with the people that they’re policing.”
On affordable housing, Owen says he can’t wait to “sink [his] teeth” into that issue. Specifically, he would like to be a part of the conversation to amend and update the metro’s land development code.
“Is it getting in the way of our ability to provide more housing in general but also specifically more affordable housing?” said Owen. “I think it is.”
Martindale sees Kentucky’s eventual removal of state income tax as a start toward helping more people afford housing, but she sees possible cuts locally, too.
“I think there are ways we can lower taxes within metro government,” Martindale said, “because I think that we’re very bureaucracy-heavy.”
On homelessness, Martindale sees possibly establishing a place (besides jail) people can be taken for consolidated services. Owen says funding the affordable housing trust fund would help.
On infrastructure, Owen says the metro needs to continue to invest in public infrastructure and public transportation–but also the smaller things.
“All the things that make a community, that make a neighborhood feel like a place that you want to be,” said Owen.
When asked about infrastructure, Martindale has a specific community in mind.
“In District 9 specifically, sidewalks are an absolute must,” said Martindale. “We have the highest population of the visually impaired of the whole state, so their experience walking, living, shopping in Clifton specifically is vital.”
Election Day is Nov. 8.
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