Atlanta City Council District 11 would be Marci Overstreet’s first elected office. She spoke to Saporta Report via email.
Q: What’s your No. 1 concern for your district specifically?
A: I’m motivated to serve my community as its Council member because my neighbors and I have agreed that our legacy community is worth preserving while growing. We deserve a safe neighborhood that is both age-friendly and a progressive haven for our youth. Our city is growing rapidly with many projects slated for southwest Atlanta. I’m running to ensure that southwest Atlanta reaps the benefits of this enormous growth without displacement.
Q: What could you do as a Council member about that?
A: SAFETY. SERVICE. GROWTH. Having had the experience of enjoying our legacy neighborhoods during my fundamental years will undoubtedly help while in office. The relationships and trust that I’ve built through leadership roles and community involvement that I have successfully taken on in various organizations, along with the decades of invested interest in the community demonstrated through our Cascade Road family business, will prove useful while serving at City Hall.
The Atlanta Realtors Association and Atlanta Commercial Board of Realtors as well as the Buckhead Coalition, Inc. along with several community leaders and professionals have endorsed me. They recognize that I am the right leader for progression in southwest Atlanta.
I’m running for City Council District 11 because it takes the right representation in City Hall to do the work on behalf of southwest Atlanta. I’m the right leader to build necessary respectful relationships in council needed to achieve the progress desired in my beloved southwest community.
Q: What’s an uncomfortable truth the next council needs to face?
A: Truth is, we have been quite resistant to progress and change in District 11. We feel so strongly about preserving the legacy of our neighborhoods and our resistance has cost us seats at the growth and progression tables. When I’m on Council, I will lead with trust and transparency, building on my already strong relationships. This will allow my neighbors to feel comfortable about progress. My neighbors and I will work together to demand a seat at the decision tables so that we can steer the economic development of our district.
Q: What’s something Council has gotten right in the last four to eight years?
A: Southwest Atlanta, including the Campbellton Road corridor, Cascade Road and many of the streets in the district, has finally been the main topic of many growth and development conversations. We’ve been awaiting the proper funding and legislation to come our way. Future developments and more funding are in the near future. The current Council has to be given credit for most of the funding work. The new Council will be charged with overseeing and directing the projects. I’m up to the charge.
Q: What’s something Council has gotten wrong or failed to do in the last four to eight years?
A: While Atlanta is enjoying new developments around many areas of the city, including our wonderful BeltLine, many of our longtime residents are being displaced. Even when parameters were put in place in the developer’s agreements to include a certain number of housing units with a percentage of affordable housing, the agreements have been breached and gone unmonitored by Council for far too long. This has left our venerable Atlantans in jeopardy of losing their homes and working families unable to live anywhere close to the BeltLine because there aren’t enough affordable options available.
It is not enough to require an agreement for a percentage of affordable homes to be included in a contract, IT HAS TO BE MONITORED. If the agreement isn’t upheld, THERE SHOULD BE A SUBSTANTIAL MONETARY PENALTY and a probationary period where the developer isn’t allowed to bid for a city agreement for a set amount of time. NO EXCEPTIONS.
Q: Bottom line, overall, why should people vote for you? What’s your pitch to the voters?
A: I’m running in the community where all of my meaningful life moments have occurred. I graduated high school in the community. I was married in our District 11 church. We have had a family business in the community for 20 years. We’ve raised 3 children in District 11. I’m running to STAY in District 11. I’m motivated to create a progressive AGE-FRIENDLY community for my family and our neighbors.
My vision for the City of Atlanta is one that is SAFE, transparent, equitable, progressive, accountable, compassionate, diverse, inclusive and sustainable. Specifically, my vision can be realized through diligently working daily for the betterment of all areas of Atlanta.
I will invest in technology and upkeep of our public safety sector. I strongly believe in collaboration with public safety leaders to advance programs that will enhance our communities, which will also include an increase in the number of officers and incentives so more officers will live among the people they protect.
I will implement a transparency policy as an agreement with my constituents ensuring they will have access to weekly updates of the Council’s developments and affairs. This will directly enhance fiscal responsibility. I will follow up on each request from a resident and include the findings and/or resolutions in the weekly updates.
I will continue to foster my longtime good relationships with residents, listening to their concerns and opportunities, which will promote creating policy and legislation that will bring about the most positive impact and promote sustainable options.
The District 11 residents and the City of Atlanta can count on OVERSTREET to get to work on each and every street!