For Immediate Release
ASHEVILLE, NC (2/7/17) – 2015 Asheville City Council candidate Rich Lee announced a second bid for the office Tuesday. In a letter on a new campaign website, Rich writes, “the city still struggles to be an affordable and sustaining home to many. The character of the community is more threatened than ever by traffic, a weak job market, adverse legislation and the impacts of being a highly-commodified tourism economy.”
“But I have hope. It’s clearer than ever that the root thing that makes this ‘Asheville’ to all of us is the feeling of a genuine, diverse, working, small town,” he writes, “a place that feels beautiful and authentic… [That] core character can be saved.”
The new website includes detailed policy proposals around affordability, diversity, parks and greenways, infrastructure, local businesses, and other local issues. They emphasize neighborhood-level decisionmaking and support for small businesses and homeowners over large, out-of-area interests. “Infrastructure should keep pace with development,” says the site’s Issues page, “or development should be delayed.”
Rich is a member of Asheville’s Multimodal Commission and Greenway Committee, and serves on a number of small committees around city parking and transportation issues. He is Vice President of the Coalition of Asheville Neighborhoods and a former founding board member of the East West Asheville Neighborhood Association, where he helped lead a campaign to reroute factory trucks off of Haywood Road. The 2015 City Council race saw him finish first runner-up out of a crowded field of sixteen.
Of that experience, he says, “I learned a lot about what not to do. It was a difficult time personally, as well as the rigor of the campaign. But the experience was clarifying. You can see residents want a robust local government to step in where the market fails us. People want to feel the city has their back.”
“I’m relaxed and focused. It’s going to be a good race,” he says.
A mountain resident for 20 years, Rich works as a financial advisor specializing in socially-responsible investments. He lives in Haw Creek with his partner Lindsay and their four children.
Questions for the campaign can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or through the campaign’s Facebook page.