A student journalist from Columbia College was at the latest UNC Candidate Forum; this is how it went.
Three 46th Ward Alderman hopefuls gathered in an open forum to convince residents they are the best candidates for the job.
Emily Stewart, Andy Lam, and Berekadu Retta meet at 7:00 p.m. Tuesday night at Nick's Uptown to discuss how they would unite the 46th Ward to get rid of gang violence, create real budget reform, and fix transportation within the ward.
"I think it’s time for someone to stand up and get something fixed," said Lam. "I consider myself a fixer. I am not a politician, I am not lawyer, I’m not a worker in government, I am just an everyday guy like you."
Lam talked about fixing gang violence by installing more cameras around the ward, especially in high crime areas.
"Some might worry that big brother is watching us all the time," said Lam. "The idea is not to steal anybody's identity or stalk people, the idea is when we have more cameras crime tends just to go down."
One way Stewart plans to reduce gang violence and crime is by creating a new budget for the 46th Ward. It's real budget reform that is going to bring additional police to our streets in the future," Stewart said.
Stewart said one thing that was absolutely necessary for the city of Chicago is to restructure pension funds for current employees of the city.
"That is not a popular decision, but I am not about popularity," Stewart said. "I think if we restructure pension funds for current employees we are going to protect ourselves from insolvency."
Retta said if he was elected he would concentrate his efforts to improve transportation, especially the Wilson Red Line stop.
"Every public facility should be accessible but Wilson is not," said Retta. "That is something we are going to have to work with right away."
One way he would make the Wilson stop more accessible is by having the Purple Line stop there. "It happened there many years ago, we need to get those things back," Retta said.
Retta has already turned in his petitions to the Board of Elections. Stewart and Lam said they plan to file their petitions before the November 22nd deadline.
The last day to register to vote is Monday, January 24. Voting will begin Tuesday, February 22nd in 2011.