Amir Farokhi (I)
Unopposed incumbent for Atlanta City Council District 2
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What immediate actions can city council take to aid in curbing the violent crime occurring in Atlanta?
Violent crime is the result of macro trends, seen around the country (see., e.g., the near absence of effective gun control), and difficulty to solve in short-term steps. However, among the steps that Council can and has taken are working with APD on targeted responses, recruitment, use of technology, and addition of street lighting and cameras. Moreover, I worked with the Mayor’s Office to pass “nuisance” legislation that creates a fast-track for liquor license revocation for businesses at which there are multiple violent incidents.
Will you make affordable housing a priority of your term on the council, and what actions need to be taking to insure meeting the goal of 20,000 affordable homes by 2026?
Yes. We have a lot of tools at our disposal. I have offered legislation to allow for more dense development, especially close to transit. In order to increase housing affordability, we need to increase housing supply…at all price points that are in demand. Studies have shown even the development of more market-rate housing increases affordable housing options in the marketplace. Still, we must look to Atlanta Housing to build more low-income housing faster and at ways to incent developers to do the same. Our recent housing bond will help but it is insufficient alone to meet demand. We must grow with density to create affordability.
Will transit on the Atlanta BeltLine corridor be a top priority and how will you work to fast-track it?
I represent a district with a portion of the Beltline that is slated to first receive light rail. Indeed, this part of the Eastside Trail sits in the Census tract that saw the highest population growth of any Census tract in Georgia over the last ten years. The ridership and destinations are there and need to be served. I’m hopeful the project will deliver on time as promised.
What can the council do prioritize combatting climate change?
A number of things: promote density and transit-oriented development, strengthen the tree protection ordinance, promote BRT expansion, provide weatherization assistance to low-income homeowners, look at a “green bond” to fund renewable energy goals, etc.
What are three issues specifically affecting your district that you plan to address while on council?
Infrastructure improvements and funding; quality of City service delivery; and managing growth through smarter zoning.