FOX19 called current Cincinnati City Council Member Yvette Simpson to ask her our five questions for city council candidates. Simpson is one of 21 candidates vying for 9 spots on the Cincinnati City Council in the November 2013 election. Her responses are below.
Q: Tell us about yourself
Simpson grew up in Lincoln Heights and was raised by her grandmother in public housing. She's the first in her family to go to college.
After earning her law degree she practiced at several local firms, then led Miami University's first pre-law program. She now practices employment and labor law at Ulmer & Berne LLP and expects to get her MBA from Xavier in 2014.
She currently chairs the Small Business Advisory Committee, a city commission composed of business leaders and advisers.
Q: Do you think privatized parking is a good idea?
Simpson supported the parking plan stating Cincinnati needs a more effective, functional, and modernized parking system that will also generate additional revenue for the city.
Simpson says we need to make serious efforts to balance our operating budget and cannot do it with cuts alone. She says generating new revenue and maximizing current assets is essential.
Q: Do you support the streetcar project?
Simpson has been a steadfast supporter of the streetcar since the project began and still believes it will play a vital role in the future success and growth of Cincinnati.
She says studies have consistently shown the long-term impact of the project will produce more than $3 of city revenue for every $1 invested. Simpson says this factor and the overall impact it will have in bringing new residents to our city are both reasons she believes Cincinnati should keep moving forward to finish the project.
Q: What do you think about the condition of our public schools?
Simpson says Cincinnati Public Schools have greatly improved and also have several community learning centers and school-based health centers that are improving the lives of students. However, she points out three key areas of improvement:
1) A better partnership between the city, non-profit organizations and schools for a more collaborative approach to helping the lives of students.
2) Prioritize early childhood by ensuring all students have access to quality preschool and the third-grade reading guarantee.
3) Provide additional opportunities for practical work-related training and activities prior to graduation and raise the academic profiles of college-bound students.
Q: What do you think would make Cincinnati a better place to live?
Simpson says we need to ensure Cincinnati reaches its full potential by continuing the growth and momentum seen over the past few years in the most neglected neighborhoods.
"We have to ensure safe, clean, inclusive, vibrant communities throughout our city," she says.
You can learn more about Yvette Simpson on her campaign website.
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