I have listened...I have heard the voice of the people.
Commissioner Brenda Howerton People’s Priorities
1. Strengthen the Economy…Creating Jobs
The key to strengthening our communities begins with economic growth that spurs job creation. I continue to work with my colleagues on the Board and in the City to enact policies and proposals that generate jobs at all skill levels coupled with the training and opportunities to strengthen low and middle class families.
I supported economic development incentives for industrial expansion, as well as hotel and restaurant development in downtown Durham. Took lead role in adaptive reuse incentives for projects including the Durham Innovation District, Chesterfield and business expansions such as BioMeriux in the Treyburn Industrial Park.
2. Strengthening Education…Improving outcomes for children, youth and teachers
Education is a top priority (from early childhood education/public education/charter schools/college & career/ readiness/training) because I firmly believe that we have an obligation to end the achievement gap between students that are economically and socially disadvantaged as well as the digital divide. It is my pledge to assure that our children have the strongest foundation to learn. To attend school in an environment that is safe, equipped with the tools and the most up to date technology available. They should also have teachers that are well skilled and compensated.
3. Building safer neighborhoods…enhancing community trust and justice
Every Durham citizen deserves to feel safe. I have a history of advocating for programs and policies designed to improve relationships and increase trust between the police, communities and the criminal justice system. Strategies that are inclusive and aim to engage and advance the public in addressing issues contributing to those relationships and steps to building trust and respect through relationships. I will continue to advocate for the necessary resources and programs to build safer neighborhoods that enhance community trust and justice.
4. Investing in affordable housing initiatives…creating strong, stable neighbors where families thrive
I support a multi-prong approach to make housing more affordable.
While Durham does not have the affordable housing options to meet the needs of the residents the future looks brighter as growth and investment particularly in downtown expands. Elected officials, organizational partners and the citizens of Durham must come together and call for investment in building affordable housing options that keep residents in their respective communities. I support initiatives that will create strong stable neighbors where families will thrive. Expanding investment, incentives and leadership at the county and city level where leveraging of properties to bring more affordable housing options to the core of Durham.
5. Promoting healthy lifestyles…boosting wellness, vitality and quality of life
There is no question that health is a priority and one where the benefits span the spectrum of issues that make for a vibrant community. It is imperative that the prevention, health disparities and access to care remain at the top of our community investment. I will continue to work with my colleagues and organizations to advance policies and initiatives that promote Durham County taking action to address helping reducing obesity, improving access to healthy food.