COUNTY COMMISSION/9TH DISTRICT
Angela Powell of Pontiac is currently an Oakland County Commissioner for District 10, and a precinct delegate. She works as a public relations specialist for the city of Pontiac. Powell has an English degree from Oakland University.
Mass transit for Oakland County
The Oakland County Board of Commissioners recently voted to place on the November ballot a .95 mill tax for county-wide mass transit. The millage would be levied for 10 years, starting in 2022. The proposal does not allow for any communities to opt out of the mass transit program, which some communities have done in the past. Some are also questioning whether there will be less demand for an expanded mass transit system given the fact that workplace habits, during the pandemic crisis, have leaned more toward remote working. Do you support the mass transit tax? Please explain.
Yes, mass transit is to support more than just workplace. Our future generations are looking to lean more on mass transit and Michigan/Oakland County is well overdue in trying to figure this out. Especially for the district I represent who depends on this transit to get to work and other places for life's needs and enjoyment.
Museum millage questions
Earlier this year officials from Detroit had been pushing to have Oakland and Wayne counties place on the ballot a .4-mill tax for up to 20 years for the Detroit Historical Museum, the Dossin Great Lakes Museum and the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Although officials eventually backed down on asking for the tax this year, it is more than likely they will return in the future. Would you support placing this millage question before voters in Oakland County and would you personally support this tax request? Why or why not?
Absolutely. As a Black individual our culture has been robbed of being able to share our history and we have played a huge part in the making/creation of America. Yes, I support this millage.
Highland Park Water and Sewer debt
Highland Park, a member of the Great Lakes Water Authority, since 2012 has failed to pay for what now amounts to over $54 million in water and sewer debt, which means member communities in Oakland County will be placed in a position to underwrite this debt whether through increased rates for water and sewer or tapping budget reserves to accomplish the same. The state of Michigan has failed to deal with this issue. What do you think should be the solution to this growing problem of a GLWA member community failing to pay for water and sewer services? Please be specific.
I am not pleased with this issue and whatever Oakland County and/or Michigan must do to fix this problem needs to get on it now. We already seen what happened and is still an issue in Flint. So fix the water issue. Citizens did not create the issue, poor oversight and leadership did, and we have to help this community.
Oakland's sustainability efforts
Oakland County Executive David Coulter has appointed the county's first sustainability officer as part of the county's effort to address global warming issues in the coming years. Do you support the county's efforts on this undertaking? Should the board of commissioners have a role in setting the agenda for reaching carbon neutral goals in the future?
Yes, I am pleased with this appointment. We are working already in collaboration with the executive office. So we shall see what the future brings with this department.
Future of the board of commissioners
The size of the county board of commissioners has been reduced over several decades, each time with the reduction being billed as a way to save taxpayer funds. The most recent change in board size, prompted by Democrats taking control of the board, reduced the size from 21 commissioners to 19. Some have suggested that the ultimate goal may be to reduce the size of the board to 15 members, as in Wayne County, followed by a sizable annual pay increase. Oakland County commissioners now make $37,000 annually, plus health care benefits. In Wayne County, the pay rate is $61,800. Do you think the board size should be reduced further, accompanied by a sizable increase in pay?
This is determined by whoever has the majority every 10 years, therefore it is unfair to comment on the size. Every redistricting period is different depending on the scope of the overall county at the time. And because of inflation (with salaries) the same assessments that have been taking place for the workplace should be looked at the same way with elected officials positions.
2020 presidential election results
Do you accept the presidential election results of 2020 in Michigan? Will you accept the results of the 2022 primary and general election? Explain why or why not.
Yes, it was a fair process. I am in support of our clerks around Michigan to be professional and accurate when dealing with the elections.
What do you believe are the key issues facing Oakland County at this time? How would you work to resolve the issues?
Mental health assistance, housing and transit are just a few things we need to focus on, especially in my district. Post-COVID has made things even more challenging and whatever resources is needed for each community to keep thriving, we need to get the resources they need.
Why should voters select you over your primary opponent? Please be specific in drawing your comparison.
I am qualified, hard working and get results. Whatever my district needs I try my best to get that request/need executed. This is what I am known for in my district now. I am a concerned and passionate person who strives every day to make Michigan, Oakland County, District 9 a great place to live and work.