Q&A sheet attached as breakout under related content
Q: Is there a value in the city providing tax abatements to businesses? What approach should the city have on tax abatements?
A: Yes, we as a community should be encouraging existing and new businesses to invest in Columbus, grow the tax base and add jobs. Our approach should be to evaluate each request on its potential for new investment, number of jobs and salaries to attract and keep small and large businesses.
Q: What three improvements to city government would you like to see, and why?
A: Have the mayor’s calendar online, so the public and other city officials can see how he/she is representing us. City should contact property owners in person prior to taking any action on their property. Model Columbus on Regional Cities Initiative to help grow our economy and improve opportunities for our residents.
Q: What should the working relationship be between the city council and the mayor?
A: The relationship should be one that exemplifies open communication, respect and collaboration. It should be highly regarded as a partnership that utilizes the gifts and talents of those willing to serve.
Q: Should city government provide money for the arts and nonprofit organizations? Explain why or why not.
A: Yes, these programs benefit our local economy and help create a great quality of life for residents and businesses. We do not need to be the sole source of funding; partnerships help create trust, collaboration and pride. The arts are a great way to attract younger citizens in our community.
Q: Columbus is faced with the need for an overpass at State Roads 46 and 11 to alleviate an expected increase in railroad traffic and a growing number of commuters along the city’s west side downtown entrance. An overpass could cost about $35 million. What is your solution for funding it?
A: We need to evaluate the situation thoroughly, looking at all impacts and alternatives. An overpass would have a huge impact on flooding. If in-depth investigation shows it as the best solution, we could use the 80/20 match program with INDOT. The city’s share could come from a variety of sources.
Name: Laurie Booher
Address: 3565 Woodfield Place
Occupation: Business owner
Education: Master’s degree in physical therapy
Previous elected offices held (and when): None
Previous elected offices sought (and when): None
Community involvement: Columbus Service League, 10-year member; served on St. Peter’s School Board; served on Turning Point Domestic Violence Services board; Freedom Field All-Inclusive Playground, co-chair; Columbus Redevelopment Commission, member.
Immediate family: Sons, Cory, Collin; daughter, Kylee.