Hayes Walsh: I’ll work on housing, returning the promenade, expanding transportation | SummitDaily.com

Hayes Walsh: I’ll work on housing, returning the promenade, expanding transportation

Hayes Walsh
Frisco Town Council candidate
Hayes Walsh

Occupation: Property manager

Years in Summit County: 5

Family: Mom, dad, sister, three nieces and dog, Jackson

Civic involvement: Created and circulated Frisco housing petition

My goal running for council is to implement and execute the will of Frisco’s residents. I hope to bring transparency to the process of local governance and offer solutions directly for public voting in as many situations as possible. When tough decisions have to be made at the council level, I will gather feedback from constituents to guide my decision-making and vote in alignment with a consensus majority.

While collecting signatures for the Frisco housing petition, council members spoke with me candidly and made it clear they did not feel beholden to the will of the people but rather have been elected to do as they see fit regardless of the public’s stance on an issue. I fundamentally disagree and believe council’s duty is to implement the will of the majority. I aim to change the culture and practices of council from within the system.

Priority No. 1: Main Street promenade

My No. 1 priority is returning the Main Street promenade. For the past two summers, downtown transformed from a thruway into a livable, open-air community, where people come together in meaningful ways. The promenade increased safety for pedestrians and improved quality of life for locals. I believe an annual promenade running June through September is a highly desirable amenity that will raise property value. 85% of residents surveyed were in favor of continuing the Main Street promenade, and council voted it down. This is a decision that should have been brought directly to voters to determine an objective metric for how the majority of our community wants to move forward.

Priority No. 2: Housing

I’ve spent hundreds of hours discussing Frisco’s housing situation with 1,000 people. I learned most people in this town are smart, nice, have good ideas and offer a range of opinions covering a full spectrum of thought. Allowing the community to vote on specific legislation gives everyone a chance to participate in forming policy around a complicated issue. Giving people a voice brings increased participation to the process and allows the community to move forward toward solutions rather than stall in debate. The proliferation of short-term rental technology has changed the game, and we need to decide if there is a line between subsidizing an investment property and operating a commercial enterprise. I believe there is a line to be drawn, and it should be determined by our residents at the ballot box.

Priority No. 3: Public transportation

After spending 80 hours circulating the Frisco housing petition, one thing became very clear: There will never be fewer people in Summit County. Tourism will only continue to increase in the coming years with every group of visitors adding at least one vehicle to the road. Moving forward, we need to focus on maintaining quality of life for our residents by creating public transportation solutions that are effective, efficient, free and comfortable. We need to create systems that allow and encourage visitors to move around Frisco without using a car. Summit Stage is a fantastic amenity at the county level that we should expand upon locally for everyone’s benefit.

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