Chandler council candidate: Jane Poston - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Chandler council candidate: Jane Poston

May 27th, 2022 SanTan Sun News
Chandler council candidate: Jane Poston
Politics
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JANE POSTON

 

 

Age: 53

Years in Chandler: 13 as a resident (20 years as an employee /business owner)

Immediate family: Husband Jason Heinkel, with our two sons, Jacob & Jackson.

Education: Bachelor of Journalism, University of Missouri-Columbia.

Job:  Owner and partner in J2 Media, proving video production and full service communications.

Why are you running for Council?

I am running to make a good city better. Chandler enjoys a strong reputation of being a quality community for residents, businesses, nonprofits and our schools. As a former City employee, small business owner, and community volunteer, I believe I bring the right skills and experience to serve Chandler.

Prior to your decision to run for Council, how have you been involved in the community and/or in town government-related activities?

My community service includes Chandler Chamber Board Chair (2021), and Women in Leadership Chair, 2021 Citizens Bond Committee (Airport), Chandler Education Foundation Board President, East Valley JCC Board, CUSD Bond & Override Marketing Chair and pro bono work for Chandler Firefighter Charities, AZCEND, ACEE, and Fans Across America.

What attributes do you bring to the table that would serve the city well, particularly if economic headwinds such as inflation confront America in the next few years?

As a former City employee and fiscal conservative, I understand the City’s budget and the importance of being a strong steward of the taxpayer dollar. I also own a successful small business and have served on budget override and bond committees for both the City and the school district.

Name three of your top concerns in Chandler for the next four years and tell how you would address them?

Public safety hiring, high quality jobs, and quality of life services (water, transportation, parks and recreation facilities). I will work closely with my colleagues on the Council, our residents and the City’s department and division staff to outline goals and objectives to adequately address these concerns.

Name something you would change in city government that would improve it.

As a former city employee and a professional communicator, I bring a unique perspective. I am an advocate for government transparency and communication. I would work to ensure that we continue to provide open communications to our residents and encourage and promote resident involvement on important issues.

How can the city facilitate the development of affordable workforce housing?

This complex problem has been amplified by strong economic policies and job growth encouraging people to move here at a rapid pace. Attainable housing is a regional issue with multiple pressure points, and I believe we should work with partners across the Valley to find a balanced path forward.

What issue has been handled poorly by the current City Council and what would you do differently?

Not passing a Non-Discrimination Ordinance (NDO). Through my work at the Chamber and as a small business owner, I have been an active supporter of a Non-Discrimination Ordinance, and Chandler has failed to act on this important issue, despite the strong recommendation from the business community.

Should Chandler pass an anti-discrimination ordinance with penalties for violating its provisions? Why or why not?

There should not be penalties, and all recommendations I have supported have very specifically stated that this should be a Civil issue.  I believe the focus should be on providing education, awareness, and training. The end goal of an NDO is making certain every resident is treated fairly and equally.

Would you support a bond issue to make the runways at Chandler Airport longer? Why or why not?

I would want to make sure the City receives resident and business input prior to taking a position on such an important issue. A bond issue of this nature has long standing ramifications for our community and must be studied thoroughly.

What achievement/activity that benefitted your neighborhood or the city are you proudest of?

I am most proud of my efforts as Board President of the Chandler Education Foundation. During my tenure, I led the effort that lifted the Foundation from a budget deficit and implemented policies and procedures to ensure long-term fiscal stability. That work continues to benefit Chandler students today.

Poston: I’m committed to transparency, communication

By JANE POSTON
Guest Writer

As a professional communicator, I understand the power of the tools we use to inform and educate the public.  And how they can be implemented in a way that discourages public input.

For example, holding meetings on important issues at inconvenient locations or at a time of day when most residents are at work.  Or failing to use the tools easily available, like streaming video, or proactively communicating through social media.

Chandler historically has been a leader in garnering public input, for instance taking budget issues out to the community rather than requiring residents to come to us.  When Council is making some of its most important decisions around the annual budget, at the very least, those hearings should be streamed online.

City staff and facilities are already in place to make that happen.  There’s no reason that we aren’t making that information easily available to the public online.

None of this is nefarious. It’s just disappointing. Especially as someone who thinks residents’ opinions are the most important ones.

As a former city employee, it was my job to ensure that our residents received honest, open and truthful communications in a timely manner. Throughout my tenure with the city, I was an advocate for government transparency and communication. I also understood the importance and witnessed the value of two-way communication.

I truly believe that an informed citizenry is a major benefit for our community. It encourages and promotes resident involvement on important issues. The city can tap the expertise and knowledge of our residents and invite those who have the time and desire to serve their community by volunteering for the many citizen boards and commissions that provide feedback to the elected officials.

In addition, I believe sincerely in the importance of local government.  I think it’s the form of government with the greatest impact on the daily lives of Chandler residents.   When City government is working well, it is seamless; the water flows from your sink, trash is picked up on time, and the streets are well maintained.

And on the occasion when it’s not working so well, you can call or send an email, and a real person – often one of your own neighbors – is there to help you.  You can even voice your opinions in person to your elected officials during City Council meetings.

More importantly, city government should listen to what you have to say.  In fact, a quick glance at a City organizational chart is a good reminder of who is in charge – that’s you, the residents of Chandler.

I’m committed to ensuring that residents are heard through open and transparent communication, and a process that meets the needs of the residents, not just what is convenient for elected officials.

If I am fortunate to serve you on the Chandler City Council, I will work with my colleagues to not only continue to open up the lines of communication but to make our good city better.  Meanwhile, please feel free to contact me anytime at www.janeposton.com.

Poston: I have the right skills to serve Chandler

By Jane Poston
Arizonan Guest Writer

One of the greatest ongoing responsibilities facing Chandler is creating new employment opportunities and maintaining our existing jobs in a highly competitive and changing world. This includes supporting businesses of all sizes.

We’ve had some incredible announcements and a lot of be proud of to the credit of both the City and the Chandler Chamber.  However, we can’t rest on our past successes- because we aren’t just competing with other Valley cities – we’re competing for jobs across the country and the globe.

One of the biggest issues affecting businesses right now is workforce development and training. We are fortunate to have companies right here in Chandler take on some of that responsibility.  And although the City doesn’t oversee the education system, our economic development efforts should be focused on facilitating connections between schools, colleges and businesses.

I have first-hand insight into the importance of educating our young people and how an educated workforce translates to a strong business community through my experience includes working with both the city’s Economic Development division and the Chamber of Commerce on business recruitment and retention and serving as the board president of the Chandler Education Foundation and marketing chair of the Chandler Unified School District’s Bond and Override Cmmittee.

Encouraging public-private and non-profit partnerships is also key to supporting our business community. The City can bring all of these stakeholders together to strategize the best methods to provide assistance and support to our businesses, especially new startups.

A few examples of how Chandler is already making headway in these areas are the partnerships it has established to launch Chandler Innovations, an entrepreneur incubation program sponsored by the city.

By helping companies turn their ideas into a business, and leveraging the expertise of local business leaders, the city is well positioned to land innovative, high-tech companies in its backyard and create job opportunities for residents.

Another example is the city’s partnership with the University of Arizona, which offers both undergraduate and masters level courses in Chandler.

As a former local government employee (I’ve worked in both Phoenix and Chandler), small business owner and longtime community volunteer, I believe I bring the right skills and experience to serve our residents and businesses.

Specifically, my past community service experience includes serving as board chair of the 2021 Chandler Chamber of Commerce, chair of Women in Leadership, 2021 Citizen Bond Committee (Airport), and East Valley JCC Board.

I also have provided pro bono work for Chandler Firefighter Charities, AZCEND, ACEE and Fans Across America to name a few.

I’m proud of the many opportunities Chandler offers the business community members to become involved with our city and I look forward to expanding these community service opportunities.

Through strong collaborations between our city, its residents, educational institutions, and our businesses, we can continue to build a thriving community that we can all take great pride in…let’s all work together to make Chandler the first choice for people looking to open a business and to get a job!

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