Elise Partin - Creating Solutions that Work
I am excited to be speaking to you as both Cayce’s mayor and as candidate. I love Cayce, and I love our citizens and that is why I have decided to run again for what I consider one of the most fulfilling jobs imaginable: working with all of you to make Cayce one of the most livable, affordable and best-run cities in the state.
I first decided to run for mayor in a special election 10 years ago when, as a resident and taxpayer, I was looking for our voices to be heard and to have a government that has a plan of action. I was looking for accountability and wise use of taxpayer monies. As promised, we have we focused on areas that seemed the most critical for Cayce’s health and long-term growth. We have created a safer community, enabled citizens to become more engaged with an open, responsive government, undertaken a number of strategic development initiatives and have greatly improved Cayce’s quality of life. This was the foundation needed for a stronger Cayce and we have built it. But there’s still much more we can do.
Since 2008, when you first elected me, we have focused on three priorities. Working with City Council and our great staff, in collaboration with our citizens, we have achieved meaningful progress and measurable results in these areas.
Meeting the needs of residents is my first job. It takes many forms but the basis for all initiatives is communication and the well-being of those who live and work here. It’s making sure you have the information needed for informed opinions and the opportunity to participate in decision-making like sharing concerns and encouragement during the Meet the Mayor Forum and Neighborhood Leaders meetings. We keep residents informed through Facebook and Twitter and a website that is even better than before. We hire people to improve your contact with the city, from a customer services manager for utility billing to a full-time IT director who makes communicating with the city easier and more efficient. We have installed new phone and high-speed data capabilities, emergency alert systems and improved dispatch technology.
Cayce has become a far more vibrant, self-sustaining city in the past 10 years because we know that businesses won’t make investments in cities that don’t invest in themselves. We have new lighting, sidewalks and landscaping in the heart of the city and a new welcome sign. We have implemented a pedestrian safety and traffic improvement plan for Knox Abbott Drive, increased and improved our Riverwalk. We also continue to work with the National Park Service to provide interpretation at the 12,000 Year History Park. The success of this approach has been evident: the Cayce Tennis and Fitness Center, the Concord Park and Congaree Bluff residential developments, the Tremont, Otarre Pointe, and other new high-end non-student apartments, the Brookland-Cayce High School Arena scheduled to open in Fall 2018, Jewelry Warehouse, LMC Otarre, Marco’s, and Dunkin’ Donuts. The number of water and sewer customers increased with an Amazon Distribution Center, Nephron, the State Farmers Market and The Coop, USC’s golf facility, all of which has led to keeping low water and sewer bills for residents and businesses.
Wise Use of Taxpayer Dollars
In Cayce we spend what we must to improve our residents’ lives but we also seek grant funding to help us achieve goals so that we can alleviate pressure on our taxpayers. For instance, using a grant from Lexington County, we replaced antiquated water lines. We have also received grants for more efficient lighting in City Hall that helped save taxpayer money. We helped residents receive grants for making their homes more energy efficient. And through our Repair and Replacement Plan for all capital assets, we replaced decrepit Public Safety vehicles with vehicles requiring less maintenance. A lower ISO rating due to better equipment means residents save on their homeowner’s insurance. We also lowered the cost of flood insurance for residents by joining a FEMA program. We even created a Public Safety Foundation that attracts non-taxpayer funds to support initiatives that protect our citizens and our staff.
I will continue to make careful decisions so that you have a better lifestyle, fewer worries, more time and more income you can keep. That’s because we protect residents’ hard-earned tax dollars while ensuring that we constantly set priorities to meet the needs of our citizens and businesses. Open communications will remain a constant as will my commitment to a fiscally healthy, opportunity-filled Cayce that encourages families to stay while attracting newcomers.
Let’s all continue to work together – residents, businesses, city staff and council members – so that we can make Cayce an even better place to live, work and visit.