Did you know that in 2011, John Bradford won a seat on the Cornelius Council by just two votes? That’s right – just two votes.

That is why we ask you and a friend (and more!) to please come to the polls to stop the tolls. You can play a crucial role in electing Council members for the Towns of Cornelius, Davidson and Huntersville.

The citizen’s group called TollFreeNC.Org has interviewed and recommended specific candidates who have demonstrated a sincere desire to stop the tolls and are highly qualified candidates for both their character and their skill sets. We believe a town representative should ask the tough questions, ensure we’re getting the best solutions possible, and put the town’s interest ahead of their personal interests – and special interests. In addition to the new candidates who have stepped up to run, we are grateful for the incumbents Dave Gilroy of Cornelius and Danny Phillips of Huntersville for their hard work, research and courage this past year in helping to do what they can to put the brakes on the tolls.

For too long now, many of our local officials have NOT stood up for us.  The result: even though every other stretch of interstate in Mecklenburg County is six lanes or more with general purpose lanes (non-toll lanes), the Lake Norman area is about to be stuck with 50 years of toll lanes.The toll lanes are not about easing congestion; rather, they are a boondoggle for tolling corporations seeking to secure a government-backed monopoly that will allow them to charge unlimited tolls to maximize their profits without fear of competition.

We are encouraging voters to elect candidates who support the plan to widen I-77 with general purpose lanes using existing taxpayer funds that will be available through both the State’s new transportation funding model and new project ranking criteria by the Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization.

Instead of helping our traffic on I-77, the tolls will instead result in:

  • More traffic on our existing “regular” lanes since: 1) there will be limited access points to the toll lanes, 2) tolls will be very expensive (.20 to $1.00/mile), and 3) the HOV lane will turn into a HOT lane — drivers who used to carpool with two riders will now need three riders or pay a toll.
  • Very likely our property values will go down as LKN will be deemed a less desirable area by people not wanting to live in an area with a congested highway with costly toll lanes.
  • More traffic on our neighborhood streets by people trying to get around the tolls and traffic on I-77.
  • Tolls are estimated to cost in the range of $5-6 or more one way. The fee to use the tolls is estimated at .20 to $1.00 a mile. For regular commuters, that equates to roughly $2,500 a year. Although the tolls could be much higher. In Virginia on 495 the tolls to drive 14 miles has gone up as high as $9.75. http://www.wtop.com/120/3494329/High-tolls-hit-some-express-lane-motorists-by-surprise

If you are opposed to the tolls, please only vote for the candidates listed below. These are the people who will boldly stand up for your best interests and oppose special interest schemes such as the tolls.

Last day for Early Voting is this Saturday at the Cornelius Town Hall and at North Regional Library in Huntersville. Election Day is next Tuesday, Nov 5th. For additional voting information on the toll issue and candidates, please visit www.tollfreenc.org. Thank you for all your support this past year. Together we the citizens can stop this deceptive toll lane scheme and elect candidates who will speak up for us.

Sincerely, Your friends at TollFreeNC

***

See below for our Recommended Candidates

(Please vote for just these listed candidates for your vote is not diluted and will have the most impact):

Cornelius Candidates

Dave Gilroy (incumbent)
“I have served the 26,000 citizens of Cornelius for the past 8 years with one primary objective guiding all of my decisions — let’s make Cornelius the highest quality of life place to live in North Carolina and even the U.S. My long-standing voting record clearly underscores my conservative principles and core priorities:

1. Maintain the lowest tax rate in North Carolina for towns our size

2. Limit government to essential services and support for private business/investment

3. Constrain residential growth (especially high density, down-market multi-family projects)

4. Drive for the absolute best, neighborhood schools in America

5. Invest in transportation infrastructure, parks and recreation, and redevelopment of our Town Center, but do so within our means over time.

Dr. Mike Miltich
“Born in Flint, Michigan 61 years ago, I am an ENT Physician/Surgeon with Charlotte EENT Associates for 30 years. I have been a boater here for 25 years and a Cornelius resident for 18 years. I have seen many changes over the last three decades.  I have dedicated my life to one of service. I serve my patients, have served my profession, and now desire to serve my community. I interact daily with residents from all of Cornelius, from all walks of life, and from all demographics. I will use my physician skills to identify common goals, to build consensus for the right solutions, and to manage further growth and change. I helped build Charlotte EENT Associates into a successful, growing, and yet caring organization through my signature leadership style of involving all levels of the business in careful analysis and decision making. As a Cornelius Commissioner, I will bring that leadership brand to help grow Cornelius strategically and thoughtfully. If you want to learn more about me, visit www.Facebook.com/Miltich.MD.

Robert Ageenko
Robert and his wife, Ilieva, met in college in Moscow and married soon after graduation. Since Ilieva was a Cuban citizen, they were required to move to Cuba to be together. While initially successful in Cuba, Robert refused to join the Communist Party and was ultimately required to leave. He headed back to what was supposed to be a “new” Russia, was successful in business, but again ran into political trouble when he published a newspaper critical of Russia’s ties with Cuba.  He and his family ultimately were forced to seek political asylum in the United States, where he began his new life with $5 in his pockets and little English in his vocabulary. The personal and professional success he and his family have achieved here is a testament to his hard work, dedication and love of freedom and this country

“The only agenda I will have is to do what is best for this community as a whole.  The Commission needs a voice that is willing to speak on behalf of the whole community. I will stand up for what I believe is right; I have done so in the past even when there were severe consequences to me and my family and I will do so now.” For more information, visit www.electrobert.org.

Davidson Candidates

Vince Winegardner
“I have the experience it takes to represent the citizens of Davidson. I understand what is important to Davidson and I have the strength of character to oppose special interests that attempt to impose their will unfairly and at the expense of the general good.  I also understand that governmental decisions affect our citizens’ shrinking wallets and that it is fiscal responsibility that allows us to do the good things that make Davidson the community that it is.”

“Since retiring from the military after 24 years of service, I have worked in corporate America and now co-own and manage a medical practice and related corporate health care service.  I am actively involved in the Lake Norman community as President of Huntersville’s Northcross Master Association and Northcross Professional Park Association.  My past leadership and community involvement include my role as President of my neighborhood’s award winning property owner’s association.  I also served on Davidson’s Planning Board from 2009 to 2012 and co-chaired the Mobility and Community Character Comprehensive Plan Committees.  Prior to moving to Davidson, I led the United Way Campaign at Charleston Air Force Base which raised nearly $250,000 for that charitable organization. I have been on the Boards of other Associations and formed a community association in response to community issues.  I have spent my life engaged in public service.”

Rick Short
“My passion for local government has already impacted our town.  During 2011 and 2012 as the Town considered moving to 4-year terms for elected officials, I spearheaded much of the effort to prevent that change and retain our 2-year term setup.  In 2011, I worked to ensure the public would be allowed to vote on any such change, and in 2012, I provided detailed analysis to the Board on the referendum process which influenced their decision to actually drop the issue altogether – a good decision for our town. Outside of Town Hall, I am committed to being involved in our community and supporting the things that make our town special.  I am one of the founding volunteers at the Davidson Community Garden.  Last year, at my suggestion the garden set a goal to donate 1-ton of food to Loaves and Fishes at Ada Jenkins.  We met that goal.  I am currently President of the Bradford neighborhood HOA and deal regularly with Town staff regarding public works, code enforcement, and affordable housing issues.  I and my family are members of DUMC which has provided us opportunities to be involved with efforts like Room in the Inn where I have served as a volunteer driver the past three winters.  Also, for the past 18-months I have authored a blog on local politics and issues at aShortChronicle.

After 18 years working in information technology, I have experience at small companies as well as some of the largest.  Nearly half of that time was spent consulting in the telecommunications industry – experience which will be valuable in making decisions regarding Mi-Connection.  I understand how consultants think and will ask the correct questions before taking their advice.  Almost all major Town decisions are influenced by consultants.  My experience dealing with them will be a valuable skillset on the Board.  Finally, I have a strong data analysis background and will bring a focused eye to the budgeting process.”

Stacey Anderson
Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning Manager for Wells Fargo & Company, with more than 25 years financial strategy, decision making, consulting, and project management experience.

Anderson has leadership experience with Hough High School PTSA, United Way of Central Carolinas, Davidson Elementary School PTA and Lake Norman Leadership Team, and Mental Health Association of Central Carolinas.

“I am running for Davidson Town Commissioner to bring a wide variety of skills and experience to help Davidson grow and prosper.  As a member of the Davidson community for 18 years, I understand the role of commissioner is an advocate for all people of Davidson.  I intend to listen to our community before making decisions that impact Davidson’s future.  You can count on me to always look forward and to bring a well balanced, compassionate perspective to my efforts.”

“I believe that her [Stacey’s] experience in business and in non-profit organizations have given her a broad, fiscally responsible outlook. Her contribution(s) to the local community are an example for us all.” – Cindy Farmer

Beth Cashion

After earning my Bachelor of Arts degree from Hollins University, I settled in Charlotte and began a financial career (as an equity trader, corporate bond trader and syndicated loan sales officer) for what is now Bank of America.  Banking and financial experience reinforced my belief in the importance of fiscal responsibility and the obligation we have to use resources wisely. Taking some time away from the workforce while my children were small allowed me to volunteer in the community for causes that are deeply important to me. Over the years, my work has included rewarding involvement with community organizations that contribute so much to the Lake Norman area.  I have been privileged to hold leadership positions with: the Ada Jenkins Center, Davidson Community Players, Alexander Children’s Center, Davidson College Presbyterian Church Pre-School, Guardian ad Litem, the Lake Norman YMCA and as President of the Parent Teacher Association at Davidson Elementary. I currently serve as a member of the Davidson Town Planning Board. For more information, see www.votebethcashion.com.

Huntersville Candidates

Jim Puckett/Mayor
After beginning my political career in 1996 by successfully leading a group of citizens in their fight against Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) over an unfair and illogical school assignment, I was recruited and successfully ran for the Board of Education in 1997. While on the Board of Education I broke from the board majority and fought successfully alongside those suing CMS and brought an end to the educationally destructive use of race in school assignment and ended forced busing. In 2000 I was elected to the Board of County Commissioners and fought to keep taxes low, implemented Managing for Results and the Balanced Scorecard to monitor and evaluate county programs and used measurable outcomes in our funding and strategic decisions. I lead the fight to defeat an ill-conceived bond package in 2005 that led to the formation of the Governor Martin committee that rewrote the formula for capital spending focusing more on legitimate need than political gamesmanship. The defeat of the 2005 bond package also cemented suburban parents as a political force not to be ignored. During my time as a member of the school board and the county commission I oversaw $10,000,000,000 in budgets and the management of over 22,000 employees.

I look forward to using the skills gained from nearly a decade in county and regional governance along with the experience and knowledge honed from owning and operating a business to guide Huntersville into her future. I will focus our future on partnering with our North Mecklenburg, Iredell and Lincoln County neighbors to build a regional economic powerhouse, better schools, competitive tax rates, reasonable transportation and land use planning, responsible police and fire service and the vision and strategies needed to take us from good to GREAT.

Danny Phillips (incumbent)                                  

“I have lived in Mecklenburg County most of my life and have been a small business owner since I was a teenager. I have been married for thirty-two years to my amazing wife, Madeline, and we own The Old Store in Huntersville, as well as Hubbard Farm. We have two children, our oldest is Stacy, who is an Administrative Assistant at Lincoln Harris, and our youngest, Johnathan, manager our store and farm. I have seen Huntersville go from a small Rural community to a thriving suburb, which is a unique experience to say the least. I believe that watching the community grow for quite some time has given me the privilege of knowing what works and what doesn’t work for the town. I have witnessed first hand the long term successes and failures of the town. I believe that this long term insight will continue helping me make decisions that better Huntersville’s future instead of making rash choices that only benefit the present.”

Rob Kidwell

“Since 2000 our town has seen an increase in population from roughly 25,000 to over 50,000 residents. We have doubled in the past 12 years.  As your next commissioner, I would like to see our town widen roads and create an infrastructure that will not only ease traffic now but benefit our community in years to come as our population grows.    We should be working as a board and as a region to have the NCDOT widen these roads, helping us prepare for the next twenty years and beyond.  I also stand by my belief that adding toll roads to the Lake Norman Region will not remedy our traffic problems and will only create additional stress to LKN residents and drivers.

“Huntersville has so much to offer companies looking to start up or relocate to this area. Not only are we one of the safest communities in North Carolina to live and raise a family, we are also 700 miles or less from 57% of the US population and less than 6 hours from major sea ports on the East coast. Working alongside The Lake Norman Chamber and The Lake Norman EDC, we can continue to attract new companies and become home to many more entrepreneurs. Huntersville is a great area for all businesses to begin, expand, and call home.

“The men and women of our police and fire department deserve the right tools to do the job. Our community is known as one of the safest and it is due to their hard work and dedication. I will make sure all first responders will continue to have the full support of Huntersville and the Town Board.”

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