As a committed citizen, I believe it is part of our civic duty to offer time and attention to the complex job of helping to govern. When Montpelier City Councilor Alan Weiss announced his retirement, I decided to take the opportunity to put my name forward as a candidate for that seat in the next town meeting.
I am Dan Jones. I have lived on Northfield Street for almost four years, and I love Montpelier. When my wife and I first arrived here, we were struck by the town’s friendliness: Everyone looks you in the eyes and greets you. After several years, I have come to understand that this friendliness is just a part of the open and honest character of the people of central Vermont, especially those in our state capital. I want to do my part in helping us stay that way in the face of the environmental and economic challenges ahead.
For the past few years I have become a local activist. During that time, The Times Argus has been kind enough to print a number of my pieces on climate and adaptation issues. I am firmly committed to addressing challenges created by the looming climate and economic crises. I believe that building our local resilience is a way to respond to an emerging world of climate change and economic crises. Nurturing an emerging infrastructure of resilience will be increasingly one of the jobs of our local governments. Such responsiveness must be seen as a public safety issue. As more destructive weather events and economic crises recur, all of us are going to be threatened and disrupted. We need to be prepared here at home.
So far, Montpelier is doing a great job of creating some basic resilience infrastructure in the form of the new district heat plant. In fact, Sen. Sanders is so proud of what we have done that he is busy proclaiming the system as a national model of a resilient energy response by a small city. Such growing notoriety makes me exceedingly proud to have been a member of the Montpelier Energy Advisory Committee, which helped launch and nurture this project. Montpelier should be proud that we are national leaders in addressing the challenges of global warming. Now that I am the chairman of the energy committee, I believe this accomplishment should be seen as only a first step in making Montpelier a model resilient city of the future.
My professional background has included work with low-income, community development and disability rights organizations, usually in the areas of public communications and media. My resume includes years as a consultant to major cities and cable companies on public and institutional uses of cable systems. I was also a video producer and built my own business specializing in producing and distributing travel videos on New England. Vermont Life even carried our “Vermont Video Tour” in its catalog for a number of years.
Over the next few years, there will be growing challenges and opportunities for Montpelier. Building a new transportation/commercial center at the Carr Lot will provide an opportunity to showcase our new opening to the world. Other foreseeable challenges include nurturing a secure future for our rapidly aging population, perhaps addressing traffic and parking problems, and developing affordable housing to make the city more accessible for younger people who want to work and live here.
I believe I can provide a positive force for addressing these and other issues, so I am asking the voters of District 3 to give me their votes on Town Meeting Day. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at 225-6377 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dan Jones lives in Montpelier.MORE IN Commentary
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