As expected, the race for the Democratic mayoral nomination is heating up a bit. Some highlights:
• Seems that in addition to the 7.25 percent property tax increase the city just passed, City Manager Ron Carlee thinks the city may need to raise property taxes by another 2 percent next year. In a debate yesterday, mayoral candidate James Mitchell pledged to not further raise property taxes for the next two years if elected. Patrick Cannon, Mitchell’s main opponent for the Democratic nomination, meanwhile said he was “absolutely not” looking to further raises taxes. Such sentiments by both candidates are nice and all but they come a bit late…
• Speaking of which, we have the Charlotte Observer’s somewhat tepid endorsement of Mitchell over Cannon over the weekend. Some highlights:
We have some concern about Mitchell’s lack of fiscal conservatism. While we believe in smart investments to keep Charlotte moving forward, we also appreciate the need to be good stewards of every tax dollar. Mitchell supported much more generous approaches to the Panthers, Knights, streetcar and other projects than we did, and we hope the new City Council will include some new members who balance public investments with the burden on taxpayers.
Both Cannon and Mitchell have their limitations, but Mitchell strikes us as the more likely to be aware of those limitations and willing to turn to others for guidance, a valuable trait.
(The UPoR’s beef with Cannon is that he doesn’t work well with others, and thus may not be an effective leader.)
• Mitchell’s in transit between homes at the moment and may not be able to continue to represent District 2 much longer. This, of course, has no impact on the city-wide mayors race other than potentially casting Michell in a somewhat poor light.
Update: Harvey Gantt has endorsed James Mitchell.