Council candidate Q&A: Jim Doody
Name: Jim Doody
Profession: Compliance and safety manager
Lived in Grand Junction: 52 years
Political Party: Republican
Why are you running for City Council?
I know I can make a positive difference on the council. I think the opportunity to lead is there. I have the experience of having been elected to council, and I served two terms as mayor. I know staff and the process. It will not take me six months to learn the working of city government. I hit the ground running. With the disappointing ruling by the Supreme Court last week, my first act on council will be to introduce a resolution keeping all protesters as far as possible from the honorable and solemn ceremony of laying a fallen soldier to rest.
How involved should the city be with homeless issues?
I believe homelessness in Grand Junction is a serious problem. We need to recognize that a small percentage of the homeless cause a majority of the problems, and I agree with Grand Junction Police Chief John Camper that we can’t arrest our way out of that. We can spend thousands of dollars on the same people or spend that amount on different solutions. I do believe that 501(c)(3) corporations were chartered for this kind of issue. I believe there needs to be some partnerships/roundtables with the county and state as well. They deal directly with human services.
How should the city invest in economic development?
I believe in strong public and private partnerships to accomplish great things in our community. While on council I worked with GJEP to relocate Leitner-Poma to the Bookcliff Tech Park. We created the Colorado State Leasing Authority, which enabled the CBI to move from Montrose to its state-of-the-art building here. I worked with the chamber of commerce to streamline the development process. We partnered with Alpine Bank and the DDA to build the parking garage. The city has many tools in its tool box, and these are a few examples of the partnerships it is capable of.
What is your philosophy on the city’s role in competing with the private sector?
The city has certain things it does well and should do like fire, police, EMS and water treatment. There are things it should never do, like compete for restaurant business. A case can be made not to be in the trash business. The private sector is vital to a community, and government must respect what the private sector is and does. We need to strike a balance between public and private that works for all. There is no automatic formula for public-private as evidenced by the ambulance service.
How do you feel the city manager has performed?
The City Council has only three employees: city manager, city attorney and the municipal judge. Council is there to make policy. I propose that council has a fourth employee. I would recommend that the chief financial officer is a council employee as well. Currently if council wants to speak to the CFO, you have to get a meeting arranged through the city manager. While seeking information from the CFO, that information can be filtered. We the council are the stewards of the people’s money, and we should have direct access to the checkbook like any corporate CEO in the private sector.