Candidate Q&A – Avondale Estates City Commission candidate Israel KornRicardo "Israel" Korn is a candidate for the Avondale Estates City Commission. Photo submitted by Ricardo "Israel" Korn.
Editor’s note: Decaturish and the Tucker Observer have published an Elections Guide, a 76-page e-edition featuring Q&As with nearly every candidate running in our communities. To see it, click here. This special e-edition features candidates running for public office in Decatur, Avondale Estates, Atlanta City Council District 5, Clarkston Tucker and Stone Mountain. There is a PDF version of this, which you can see by clicking here, but due to the format of this e-edition, we strongly encourage you to use the e-reader version.
Decaturish provided each candidate in our local races with a series of questions about local issues. Here are the answers of Avondale Estates City Commission candidate Israel Korn. The answers have not been edited.
1) Why are you running for this office?
a. I am running for Commissioner of Avondale Estates to help the citizens’ voices be heard in government. I want to improve communication to ensure that people are educated and informed about what’s going on in the city.
2) What makes you a better candidate than your opponents?
a. I don’t think I better than them. I just bring different things to the table such as strong problem-solving skills and a servant leadership attitude.
3) If elected, what are your top two or three priorities?
a. Communication and Beautification
4) Do you think Avondale Estates’ Police Department should be reformed and if so, what reforms would you implement?
a. No, the Avondale Estate police is doing an outstanding job!
5) As the city begins amending the tree ordinance, what changes would you like to see? Do you think the tree ordinance is doing enough to protect trees?
a. The trees in Avondale, which are mature and unique to the city itself, need be protected.
6) What will you do to help make the city more welcoming to outsiders?
a. At this point, we need more destinations like restaurants and shops in the Downtown district to give people a reason to come visit Avondale!
7) If you are elected, what will you do to promote racial justice and equity in the city of Avondale Estates?
a. On a City level, I think we are doing an excellent job of treating everyone equally. We should continue down this path to inspire the message that Avondale is not exclusive and welcomes everybody with open arms.
8) What do you think of the city’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and what steps do you think the city should take to help reduce the spread of the virus?
a. COVID-19 was a unique scenario and hindsight is always 20/20. I think they did fine. However, the City should have helped the businesses more during these financial hardships.
9) Stormwater is a big problem in Avondale Estates and the city is starting to address this issue. What are some of the stormwater improvements you would like to see if you are elected?
a. At this point anything. Kids are literally kayaking when it rains. The city has already blighted certain areas in order to get funding for stormwater as well as tripling our stormwater fees. It’s time to take action.
10) What is your opinion of the current city manager?
a. A lot of the residents have voiced their opinion about City Manager and to best summarize it, he’s not much of a people person. With that in mind, I’m going into office with an open mind because we all deserve a fair chance and will form my own opinion about him based on interactions alone.
11) Do you think the city does a good job communicating with its residents and, if not, what improvements would you make?
a. No, that’s why I am running on the platform of improving communication.
12) Do you think the city should be doing more work around affordable housing to either encourage people to move to the city or to keep people, especially seniors, in the city?
a. In Avondale Estates there are plenty of affordable options. The City should put their efforts towards creating a senior tax exemption for low-income seniors who wish to stay in the city limits.
13) If you are elected, what will you do to support public schools in Avondale Estates?
a. I will support the schools by encouraging citizens and parents to volunteer and donate towards its success.
14) If you are elected, what will you do to support the business community in Avondale Estates?
a. I will listen. These businesses are what make the Downtown great! We are lucky to have their businesses in Avondale Estates and there’s no better people to ask than the business owners of how we can enable them to be more successful.
15) What do you think is Avondale Estates greatest strength?
a. Our size. We are the perfect mix of big enough to make an impact, but small enough that we can still reach all residents and touch their lives in a personal way.
16) What do you think is Avondale Estates biggest’ challenge?
a. The biggest challenge is unity. My moto is “putting unity back into the community” because that is my mission while running this election season. When residents are not on the same page, we can’t truly move forward as a team. Also, finding a balance between taking care of the residents and encouraging development of our downtown.
17) How would you address what you believe to be Avondale Estates’ greatest challenge?
a. We can create unity through communication and trust. I want the citizens and businesses to know what’s going on, which will rebuild their confidence in City Hall. To build this trust we must first communicate properly so they feel like someone cares about them individually.
18) If you are elected, do you promise to conduct yourself in an ethical and transparent manner? How would you work to promote ethics and transparency in government?
a. Yes, I would reexamine the Ethics Boards and educate people about the laws and policies governing our board of mayors and commissioners so that residents know their rights.
More information about voting in the Nov. 2 election:
Election Day is Nov. 2. Early voting will begin on Oct. 12 and will end on Oct. 29. The voter registration deadline is Oct. 4. To register to vote, click here.
To see a list of important dates in the 2021 election year, click here.
Voters in DeKalb County are eligible to apply for an absentee ballot as of Aug. 16.
To apply for an absentee ballot:
— Visit the Georgia Secretary of State website.
— Complete the absentee ballot application using the state’s official paper form. Use black or blue ink only.
Applications can be mailed to the county elections office at this address: DeKalb County Election office, 4380 Memorial Drive, Decatur, GA 30032-1239.
Applications can also be submitted by fax, 404-298-4038, or email, [email protected]
Voters may send an absentee ballot request for multiple people who live in the same household in the same envelope or email.
If an absentee ballot is not mailed to you, call DeKalb Elections office, 404-298-4020. You may still vote in person, either early or on Election Day.
In accordance with SB202, a new voting bill signed by Gov. Brian Kemp in March, a copy of a voter’s ID is required to apply for an absentee ballot. A Georgia driver’s license, Georgia state ID, Georgia voter card, U.S. Passport, U.S. military ID, employee ID issued by any branch of the federal or state government, tribal ID, or a document verifying a voter’s name and address – including a paycheck, utility bill, or bank statement – are accepted forms of ID.
Early voting begins Oct. 12 and ends Oct. 29. The hours for early voting are Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. There will also be weekend early voting on Oct. 16, 17, 23 and 24. Call your elections office for hours.
Beginning Oct. 12, you can participate in early voting at the following locations:
– Bessie Branham Recreation Center (2051 Delano Drive NE, Atlanta, GA 30317)
– Lynwood Recreation Center (3360 Osborne Road NE, Brookhaven, GA 30319)
– Berean Christian Church – Family Life Center (2197 Young Road, Stone Mountain, GA 30088)
– DeKalb Voter Registration & Elections Office (4380 Memorial Drive, Suite 300, Decatur, GA 30032)
– Tucker-Reid H. Cofer Library (5234 LaVista Road, Tucker, GA 30084)
– Stonecrest Library (3123 Klondike Road, Stonecrest, GA 30038)
– County Line-Ellenwood Library (4331 River Road, Ellenwood, GA 30294)
– Dunwoody Library (5339 Chamblee Dunwoody Road., Dunwoody, GA 30338)
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