Making a Difference
Nate Craig upholds core progressive values and is committed to ethical governance. He is a strong supporter of environmental sustainability, economic and social justice, and government accountability. The issues and policy proposals listed below illustrate the progressive change that Nate supports for Phoenixville.
The role of a mayor is not a legislative role. Nate will work to achieve all of the following initiatives through engaging and organizing residents around the priorities set out below. Once these ideas have been organized, Nate will help to champion each of the following initiatives.
Protecting Our Environment
Nate Craig is an environmentalist. Nate is eager to sign on to the Mayors for 100% Renewable Energy pledge. He will bring his commitment to environmental responsibility to his work as mayor. Increasing energy efficiency, incentivizing renewable energy, limiting overdevelopment, and protecting our waterways are important priorities for Phoenixville.
Phoenixville Borough Council just adopted a resolution for renewable energy. Read Phoenixville's resolution here.
The best next step for the Borough to follow up with this resolution is to create an EAC or a Sustainability Committee. Nate is a strong proponent of creating an Environmental Advisory Council (general information about EACs provided here). An EAC would consist of a team of local people, mostly residents who environmental experts who would advise the Phoenixville Borough Council, Planning Committee, Zoning and Hearing Board, and the mayor on the most pressing environmental issues. They would be responsible for assessing needs and proposing specific actions.
Another role of the EAC would be to educate the community on ways to participate in protecting our environment. The final best step would be to create the position of Phoenixville Sustainability Officer. In West Chester, this was accomplished by recruiting an existing staff member, training them in sustainability, grant-writing or other initiatives suggested by EAC. This staff member would execute the environmental initiatives created by the EAC once those actions were approved by Borough Council.
Limiting overdevelopment could be possibly be accomplished through the use of Transferable Development Rights or TDR. TDR limits the total density of development. It also empowers farmers and other owners of undeveloped land to conserve their land by allowing them to sell their development rights to developers of areas more appropriate for development.
Responsible Taxation and LERTA
Nate Craig believes that taxpayers’ money should be used responsibly. He had the foresight to openly oppose LERTA when repealing it looked like an uphill battle. Phoenixville Borough had previously subsidized its own overdevelopment, which required average taxpayers to foot the bill for developing luxury apartments. The LERTA (Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance) program appropriated tax rebates for developers at the expense of taxpayers. In 2017, every residents' tax rates went up by 5%, while corporate developers retained their tax breaks. LERTA also had a negative impact on our environment through subsidizing overdevelopment along waterways which feed directly into the Schyulkill river.
It was not fair to ask taxpayers to subsidize this detrimental policy. In June, Nate Craig stood as the only candidate for mayor to ask for Borough Council to vote to terminate the LERTA program. They did vote to end the program. However, as the final step in ending the program, the School Board and Chester County have to adopt this action by resolution. As of August 8th, the School Board and Chester County had not adopted this action by resolution.
Tenant Rights, Anti-discrimination, and Affordable Housing
Nate is already rallying residents of Phoenixville to call on Borough Council to create a Tenants Rights Authority. The TRA would protect tenants from unscrupulous landlords. Nate is a resolute supporter of the Affordable Housing Task Force’s efforts to ensure that residents of all income levels in Phoenixville can continue to call this town their home.
Nate Craig is in this race because he is determined to defend the citizens of Phoenixville. Nate is the only candidate who took a stand for Phoenixville’s anti-discrimination ordinance. The ordinance prohibits discrimination and provides a method to remedy for those wronged by discrimination to seek mediation for the wrongs committed. As mayor, Nate will monitor compliance with the anti-discrimination ordinance.
Nate is the only candidate who advocates conducting an accessibility study in the borough. After the study has been completed, he plans to have a town hall to discuss our strengths and to address gaps in community services and assess needs.
Accessible Government and the Parking Issue
Local government needs to be responsive to the needs and concerns of its residents. As your future mayor, Nate Craig will always be ready to listen to the people of Phoenixville. Feedback and recommendations from the local community will play an important role in developing solutions to the parking issue in Phoenixville.
Nate recognizes that there is not a single solution to the parking issue. Input from residents throughout the community will be vital to improving the everyday lives of all of Phoenixville’s residents. As a part of Nate’s commitment to make local government more accessible, he is proposing the creation of a Parking Committee. It will listen to the concerns and recommendations of residents and businesses.
The Parking Committee will report to Borough Council and propose solutions based on the advisement of residents and businesses. As Phoenixville’s parking needs evolve, the Parking Committee will play an important role in meeting those needs.