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2021 Burlington Election: Mayor & City Council

Table of Contents

VOTE IN 2 BURLINGTON ELECTIONS

The Primary Election is Oct. 5
Early Voting is Sept. 16-Oct. 2

The General Election is Nov. 2
Early Voting is Oct. 14-Oct. 30

Pick the Winners, Twice!

Burlington uses two elections to pick the final winners. In each election, you can vote for 1 candidate for Mayor and up to 2 candidates to fill 2 seats on the City Council.

PRIMARY ELECTION: The 2 candidates for Mayor and the 4 candidates for City Council with the most votes win the Primary and advance to the General Election ballot.

GENERAL ELECTION: The candidate for Mayor with the most votes wins and serves for two years; the 2 City Council candidates with most votes win and serve four-year terms.

CANDIDATES FOR BURLINGTON’S MAYOR

Ian Baltutis

Website: Baltutis4Burlington.com
Background: Mayor Ian Baltutis, elected in 2015 and re-elected in 2017 and 2019, is a 2008 Business Entrepreneurship graduate of Elon University. He works as an inventor and entrepreneur focusing on manufacturing as well as downtown and community revitalization.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

  1. Affordable Housing – Ensuring housing options meet the needs of residents at all income levels.
  2. Economic Prosperity – Building a city that invests in the jobs of the future.
  3. Equity of Opportunity – Inclusion that enables all people to succeed.

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

Over the past 6 years we have made visionary investments in training, technology, and community relations that has elevated our police department to one of the best in the nation. I commit to maintaining this push for best in class public safety.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

Our city must become an active financial partner in affordable housing development including building new mixed income communities, expanding the number of rent subsidized units, and incentivizing the private sector to build quality housing.

Recorded Transcript

Walter Boyd

Website: facebook.com/walter.boyd

No response from candidate

Jim Butler

Website: facebook.com/JimButlerForMayor

No response from candidate

Caleb J. Massey

Website: MasseyForBurlington.com
Background: I was born and raised in Alamance County. I serve as a Funeral Director at Lowe Funeral Home & Crematory and the founder of Grace Hands, a non-profit that helps with the families needing assistance with financial burdens in Alamance County.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

I will take a proactive, not reactive, approach to uniting this community, growing economic opportunities to Burlington, and making this city safer once again.

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

I would make the budget available for public for transparency. Additionally I would make sure that our law enforcement officers receive a wage applicable to their talent to recruit new officers, to make sure they stay invested in our communities.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

No response from candidate

Recorded Transcript

Donna Vanhook

Website: DonnaVanhookMayor.wixsite.com/dvmayor
Background: A Minimum Housing Commissioner for the City of Burlington, a statewide community organizer and an ordained minister. Earned two AAS degrees in Criminal Justice, a BA in Religious Studies/Human Services minor, an MDiv and MA in Nonprofit Management.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

Evidence-based solutions for violence prevention to build community resilience. Economic development to improve quality of life for all persons. Broadband, internet access/affordability to bridge the gap in the “digital divide.”

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

I submitted a proposal for community oversight of the municipal police department that affects the way it now addresses complaints against the police department. I am a former certified law enforcement officer with insight on equitable policing.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

Prioritize revitalization by allocating monies to remodel city owned abandoned buildings and dedicate unused parcels of land to constructing quality affordable housing. Maximize opportunity zones for community land trusts.

Recorded Transcript

CANDIDATES FOR CITY COUNCIL

Charles “Charlie” Beasley

Website: CharlieForCityCouncil.com
Background: I grew up on a small cattle farm in VA, and graduated from Radford University in 2006. I then spent a year in Atlanta, GA before moving to NC. Currently, I am Quality Director for Tempest Aero, and also own Burlington Inflatables alongside my wife.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

Crime, socioeconomic development/city worker pay, and city government’s engagement with the community are my top three issues. Crime and economic development are key to a successful future for any city, and both carry a strong impact on Burlington.

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

There are volumes of data showing that proper policing, combined with proper funding, create better departments and thereby, better communities. I plan to lead from this data-driven platform. Government transparency is one of my central issues.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

High focus on economic development and data-driven zoning decisions are two simple ways to positively effect housing rates. There should also be a high focus on initiatives designed to assist private versus corporate ownership of rental properties.

Recorded Transcript

Dejuana Warren Bigelow

Website: BigelowForBurlington.com
Background: I was born and raised in East Burlington. I had a small business, but currently work for Cone Health Medical Group. I am active in the community, working to reduce violence, encourage civic pride, and support children and working families.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

I will work to bring affordable housing to Burlington so everyone has a place to call home. Also, I will work to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to participate in and benefit from Burlington’s economic growth.

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

As co-chair of the Community Police Advisory Team, I have gained insight in how community policing can be most effective. As a Council member, I will continue to communicate with the Police to ensure transparency, accountability, and public safety.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

I think we should explore the policies that have worked in similar cities, for instance income-based rental housing and land trusts. We should also provide opportunities for minority contractors to build affordable homes in Burlington.

Recorded Transcript

Bob Byrd

Website: BobByrd.us
Background: 40 years of proven leadership in Alamance County. Alamance County Commissioner 2014-18. 35 years on the senior executive team at Alamance Regional Medical Center. Extensive community service with numerous local, regional, and state organizations.

What are your top 2 or 3 priorities if elected and how will they impact the daily lives of residents of your city?

Attract more high-paying, career-type jobs while protecting the environment – it will strengthen our economy and resiliency as a community. Implement the recommendations of “Destination Burlington,” the city’s comprehensive plan to benefit everyone.

The city council approves the budget and has an opportunity to offer visionary leadership as it relates to the Police Department. How will you use your leadership and elected position to ensure community transparency and accountability for the Police Department?

I will support the new Community Police Advisory team; racial equity, trauma-informed law enforcement, and crisis intervention training; evidence-based community policing and crime prevention efforts; and meeting national accreditation standards.

What policies should the city pursue to improve the affordability of housing?

More jobs with living wages; work with Community Housing Development Organizations, Habitat for Humanity, Community Land Trusts; expand Burl. Housing Authority units; incentivize apt. developers to add affordable units; repurpose abandoned buildings.

Recorded Transcript

Wendy Jordan

No response from candidate

Harold Owen

No response from candidate

Ronnie Wall

No response from candidate

More Information

3  GOOD REASONS FOR YOU TO VOTE FOR WHO WILL BE THE CITY’S NEXT MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEMBERS:  

  1. Your one vote can make a big difference in who wins a local election. How just one person voted − or didn’t vote − determined the winners in elections in 39 North Carolina cities in 2019. Your vote matters!
  2. The City Council makes decisions that affect nearly every part of your life − affordable housing, police conduct, new jobs, parks, road repair, water rates, zoning for a new grocery store (or landfill). But you decide who wins!
  3. Listen to what other voters say about why they’re voting . . .
    1. “. . . too many of my ancestors died for me not to be using my right to vote.” – Kristen Marion
    2. “. . . I want someone in city hall fighting for issues important to our community.” – Robert Dawkins
    3. “. . . city elections can be very close, so my one vote could have a big impact.” – Angelica Robles
    4. “. . . it’s not just about who’s president. Who runs local government also affects me.” – Austin Padilla
    5. “. . . not voting would be giving my power away; we must use every tool we have to be heard.” – Rena McNeil

ABOUT THIS 2021 GUIDE

THIS 2021 VOTER GUIDE FOR BURLINGTON is produced by Democracy North Carolina and Common Cause NC, which are not affiliated with any party or candidate. This Guide provides unedited responses from the candidates and vital information about how, when and where to vote. For questions about voting, call 888-687-8683 or 866-522-4723. For questions about the Guide, call 919-836-0027 x 3. 

NO PHOTO ID TO VOTE IN 2021

You do not need to show an ID when you vote unless you’re registering at an early voting site or there was a problem verifying your registration. In those cases, you may show a non-photo ID like a utility bill with your current address. 

What the Council Does 

The Mayor presides at City Council meetings. Together, the Council makes a wide range of decisions affecting your life. They hire and supervise the city manager who hires the police chief and other department heads. The Council sets policies and priorities and oversees the functions of government, including: 

  • The Police & Fire Departments
  • Zoning & Building Code Enforcement
  • Neighborhood Renewal & Affordable Housing
  • Economic Development
  • Anti-Discrimination Ordinances
  • Recreation, Parks & Arts Programs
  • Tax Rates & the City Budget
  • Water, Waste Disposal & Recycling
  • Streets, Sidewalks & Road Repair
  • City Govt. Employee Wages & Benefits

Resources for Voters 

NCVoter.org – to learn how to register or check your registration status, vote by mail, locate your Election Day poll, or call a Hotline with your questions.  

NCSBE.gov – NC State Board of Elections website with same info as above; the Board’s Hotline is 866-522-4723. 

Vote411.org – League of Women Voters resource with candidate profiles in many cities, look up your polling place, etc. 

NCVoterGuide.org – Local voter guides and loads of information about voting.

Have Your Say!

“When we all vote, we determine our future.” – Michelle Obama

The ballot box is the one place where we are all equal: One person, One vote. Your vote is a powerful way to express yourself. Vote in every election because your future matters! 

3 Ways to Vote

1. On Election Day, at your precinct

Election Day is Oct. 5 for the Primary and Nov. 2 for the General Election. On Election Day, go to your precinct’s polling place between 6:30 am and 7:30 pm.  See the list below.  If you’re in line by 7:30 pm, you will be able to vote. If you go to the wrong polling place in Burlington, ask to use a provisional ballot. If you’re registered, it will count. 

2. During early voting

Burlington voters have only one location where they can vote early in person for the 2021 elections: at the County Office Annex Building, 201 W. Elm St., Graham.  This is a good option especially if you have moved; you can update or begin a registration using same-day registration; see #3 under 6 Tips.  Here is the Early Voting schedule: 

Primary Election hours – Weekdays, Sept. 16-Oct. 1, 8 am-5 pm and Saturday, Oct. 2, 8 am-3 pm. 

General Election hours – Weekdays, Oct. 14-Oct. 29, 8 am-5 pm and Sunday, Oct. 24, 2 pm-4 pm and Saturday, Oct. 30, 8 am-3 pm. 

3. Mail-in absentee voting

Any registered voter may vote by mail.  First, submit a request for the absentee ballot, either by using the online form at demnc.co/mail or by completing and returning a paper form so it arrives at the board of elections at least 7 days before Election Day.  The paper form is at demnc.co/request.  Vote the ballot sent to you in the presence of two witnesses or a notary.  Sign and fill out the envelope sent to you with the ballot and return to the elections office by Election Day at 5 pm. See demnc.co/mail for details.  Follow the directions carefully.  

6 Tips for voting

  1. No photo ID is needed to vote in 2021. The poll worker will ask you to state your name and address and sign in. 
  2. If are not registered or have moved, register to vote at your current address at least 25 days before the election. See demnc.co/reg to register online or to download a registration form.  If you miss that deadline, you can use same-day registration to register and vote during Early Voting (but not on Election Day).  
  3. To use same-day registration, go to the Early Voting site in      Graham and show the poll worker one of these with your name and current address:  your NC driver’s license; or a utility bill, a bank or payroll statement; or any document from a government agency (letter, bill, permit, etc.); or a student ID along with a college document showing your address. 
  4. New voters in a county may need to show a form of ID if there was a problem verifying their registration; they will need to show one of the non-photo IDs listed in #3 above or any photo ID. 
  5. Any voter may get help inside the poll from a “near family” member (not a cousin). Voters with a disability (including reading difficulty) may get help from anyone, except their employer or union agent. Voters with a physical or medical disability may vote in a  vehicle at the polling location’s curb (“curbside voting”).  
  6. You don’t lose your right to vote if you have an outstanding war-rant, traffic ticket, bankruptcy, civil fine, or misdemeanor. No elections official will ask you about outstanding fines, tickets, etc. 

Questions? Call 888-OUR-VOTE or visit NCVoter.org 

Where to Vote on Election Day

Vote at your own precinct’s polling place on Election Day (Oct. 5 for the Primary and Nov. 2 for the General Election).  If you don’t know your precinct, look it up at demnc.co/poll or call the elections office at 336-570-6755. 

PRECINCT NAME

PRECINCT POLLING PLACE BUILDING

PRECINCT POLLING PLACE ADDRESS

BURLINGTON 4 HILLCREST ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 1714 DAVIS ST, BURLINGTON 27215
BURLINGTON 5 GROVE PARK BAPTIST CHURCH 108 TRAIL ONE, BURLINGTON 27215
BURLINGTON 6 TURRENTINE MIDDLE SCHOOL 1710 EDGEWOOD AVE, BURLINGTON 27215
BURLINGTON 7 ELMIRA COMMUNITY CENTER 810 WICKER ST, BURLINGTON 27217
BURLINGTON 8 KERNODLE SENIOR ACTIVITIES CENTER 1535 MEBANE ST, BURLINGTON 27215
BURLINGTON 9 BAPTIST TEMPLE 2224 ANTHONY RD, BURLINGTON 27215
BURLINGTON 10 ST PAUL’S UNITED METHODIST CHURCH 609 TRAIL TWO, BURLINGTON 27215
CENTRAL BOONE TRINITY WORSHIP CENTER 3157 CHURCH ST, BURLINGTON 27215
EAST BURLINGTON FAIRCHILD COMMUNITY CENTER 827 GRAHAM-HOPEDALE RD, BURLINGTON 27217
NORTH BURLINGTON MAYCO BIGELO COMMUNITY CENTER 849 SHARPE RD, BURLINGTON 27217
NORTH GRAHAM* GRAHAM RECREATION CENTER* 311 COLLEGE ST, GRAHAM*
SOUTH BOONE MARVIN B SMITH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 2235 DELANEY DR, BURLINGTON 27215
SOUTH BURLINGTON NEW BIRTH BAPTISH CHURCH 424 S. FLANNER ST., BURLINGTON 27215
WEST BOONE** BETH SCHMIDT PARK COMMUNITY CENTER** 2150 ELON PARK DR, ELON 27244**
WEST BURLINGTON FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH 508 DAVIS ST, BURLINGTON 27215
WEST GRAHAM HARVEY NEWLIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 316 CARDEN ST, BURLINGTON 27215

* North Graham location closed for Primary. These Burlington voters go to East Burlington precinct’s poll for the Primary.

** West Boone location closed for Primary. These Burlington voters go to Central Boone precinct’s poll for the Primary.

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