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Voter Guide for Asheville’s May Primary Plus Buncombe County Sheriff 2022

Table of Contents

VOTE IN THE ASHEVILLE’S ELECTION

Election Day is May 17

Early Voting is April 28 – May 14

Pick the Winners

Asheville voters choose their Mayor and City Council in a two-step process. First, the 2 candidates for Mayor with the most votes in the May primary, as well as the top 6 Council candidates, will advance to the November ballot. Then, in November, voters will elect the Mayor and 3 Council members.

Vote in both elections! Both are non-partisan; candidates have no party labels. The Mayor presides at City Council meetings. The Council appoints the City Manager, adopts local laws, and oversees the functions listed in the box below.

VOTER GUIDE

Candidates for Asheville Mayor (Vote for 1)

CLIFF FEINGOLD PORTRAIT

Cliff Feingold

Occupation: Dentist

Background: I was raised and educated in Asheville since the age of three. My background growing up was in the business world, and I ran my dental practice for 45 years. I will pledge to be in the Mayor’s office up to seven days a week. I have old time mountain values.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  A transparent city government has been lacking the past eight or more years. Restoring, respecting, and supporting our law enforcement heroes will make Asheville safe again.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Affordable housing:  A considerable factor in Asheville being the second most expensive place to live in NC is the fees that Asheville charges developers. Fees and taxes need to be examined and unnecessary drains on the City budget must be eliminated.

Website: Cliff.YourTeamAsheville.com

MICHAEL L. HAYES PORTRAIT

Michael L. Hayes

Occupation: Executive Director of Umoja Health, Wellness and Justice Collective

Background: Currently serving on the African-American Heritage Commission. Served on the Citizens-Police Advisory Committee. I am a longtime resident of Asheville that has been negatively impacted by the divisive politics that has plagued Asheville for the past 20 plus years.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Government/Police Transparency and Accountability. Transformative Affordable Housing. Healing our City.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Jobs for youth: Create summer job programs that give our youth an opportunity to earn money while learning a trade or developing a skill set that can be beneficial for their future. The money can come from the many sources of income that the City of Asheville has access to.

Website: Hayes4Mayor.com

ESTHER MANHEIMER PORTRAIT

Esther Manheimer

Occupation: Mayor of Asheville; partner (attorney) at the Van Winkle Law Firm

Background: Elected Mayor in 2013 & 2017. Led COVID rental assistance, redeveloping our oldest public housing, saving our water from state takeover, minority inclusion policy, police raises, reparations, improved city services, limited tax & fee increases. See more: bit.ly/estherem. Asheville High and UNC grad.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Expand public safety and rebuild APD to enable residents to feel and be safer. Redouble affordable housing efforts to increase availability to reduce houselessness and increase quality of life and stability for all residents. Climate policy and action to reduce climate change & increase resilience.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Affordable housing: Redoubling our efforts requires creativity and an all-in approach: partnerships with neighborhoods, builders, funders, employers, and organizations who are willing to be part of the solution on housing affordability and availability for everyone from our lowest-income to our median-wage residents.

Website: VoteManheimer.com

KIM RONEY PORTRAIT

Kim Roney

Occupation: Small Business Owner and Music Educator

Background: Council: Governance, Public Safety, and Boards & Commissions. Liaison: French Broad MPO, Neighborhood Advisory and Human Relations Commission. Community: Asheville Music School, board;  Just Economics, Policy Advocacy Committee; Friends of Community Radio, Station Manager (2012-15); ART-C Coalition.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  In my 2nd year on Council after 7 years in the chambers, I’m running for Mayor because the work to ensure a resilient community includes urgent action to take better care of each other and the planet, which means addressing: Affordability, Public Safety, and An Improved Public Meeting Process.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Affordable housing: With the drastically rising cost of living in Asheville, affordability includes developing deeply-affordable housing through cooperative and creative solutions along transit corridors, keeping neighbors from becoming unhoused, securing our food systems, and leading by example on living wages.

Website: KimRoney4Asheville.com

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Jonathan Wainscott

no response from candidate

Candidates for Asheville City Council (Vote for 3)

MAGGIE ULLMAN BERTHIAUME PORTRAIT

Maggie Ullman Berthiaume

Occupation: Climate Advocate

Background: I work with nonprofits to help them row in the same direction on climate change. I was Asheville’s first Sustainability Director during which time I saved $1m a year in energy costs and increased recycling 35%. I have the skills and experience to take ideas and put them into action.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Affordable housing, climate change, and quality core city services. I’ll work to keep the vibrant heart beat of Asheville alive by addressing the housing crisis and the changing climate, all while providing safe parks, sidewalks and greenways with clean water and timely garbage collection.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Affordable housing: I will bring people together to honor that Asheville has all kinds of people, and all kinds of people need all kinds of housing, which we can provide by strategically supporting infill development near jobs and on transit corridors to strengthen and diversify our neighborhoods.

Website: Maggie4AVL.com

DOUG BROWN PORTRAIT

Doug Brown

Occupation: Retired

Background: Sales rep in the Far and Middle East for a Fortune 500 company; business owner; volunteer work with teens: Big Brother, National Leadership Council, Asheville Journeymen.  Self-published two books; producer and host of a business podcast; Sunday school teacher; married 23 years, raised two children.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  1) Restore the police department staff and morale: safe, clean downtown is essential for businesses to thrive and to attract residents and visitors. 2) Correct the city’s housing first model that creates dependency on life-long subsidized housing to shelter first, treatment first, housing earned.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Affordable housing: Attracting software and engineering types of businesses to Asheville will bring in higher paying jobs that can afford housing; this creates a tax base for creating affordable working housing for the service jobs. Explore with businesses to develop close-by, vacant buildings into affordable housing.

Website: YourTeamAsheville.com; facebook.com/dougbrown4avl

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Alex Cobb

no response from candidate

ANDREW FLETCHER PORTRAIT

Andrew Fletcher

Occupation: Jazz Pianist, Tour Guide, Freelance

Background: Vice Chair, Asheville Downtown Commission. Vice Chair, Asheville Public Art & Cultural Commission. Board Member serving with non-profits Asheville Music Professionals and The Nina Simone Project. Senior in Economics at UNC-Asheville. Former Chair/Spokesperson of the Haywood/Page Advisory Task Force.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Affordable Housing, Integrity in Government, Economic Opportunity for Workers

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Affordable housing: As a renter, I know current policy doesn’t come close to matching the size of the housing crisis, and some taxpayer money is turned into developer profit. We should instead leverage public funds, credit and land to build permanently affordable housing that will ultimately be worker owned.

Website: facebook.com/FletcherForAVLCouncil

WILL HORNADAY PORTRAIT

Will Hornaday

Occupation: Designer

Background: Vice Chair Historic Resources Commission, quasi judicial City/County commission. President of Albemarle Park Manor Grounds Association (my neighborhood association/preservation 501c3). Past President and founding member Charlotte Street Business Association,  advocated for the CLT St. road diet.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  1. Responsible Growth, incremental, infill, and focused on affordable housing. 2. Environment, we need to get serious about climate change from our carbon use to our tree canopy. 3. Accountability, I want to earn your trust and work to build your trust in our government.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Affordable housing: Encourage adaptive reuse of existing underutilized buildings to quickly –and with less environmental impact – increase the amount of housing. Look to allow denser development of lots to allow small scale developers to create gentle density within existing communities.

Website: HonorAsheville.com

ANDY LEDFORD PORTRAIT

Andy Ledford

Occupation: Engineer

Background: I’m an Asheville native and US Navy Veteran. I’m an engineer by trade, and my job is looking for solutions to problems.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Traffic, infrastructure to support growth, city staffing.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue.  Police accountability and community relations: I believe the loss of trained personnel all over the city has had a snowball effect that had only gotten worse. Not enough police to enforce laws, not enough public works to keep trash picked up, releasing people who have been arrested because the jail is understaffed.

Website: facebook.com/andyledford4avl

GRANT MILLIN PORTRAIT

Grant Millin

Occupation: Strategy Innovator and Management Consulting for Public Good business owner

Background: My background includes helping to end the political career of former US Rep. Charles Taylor and a wide range of civic activity for good government and ethics. I look forward to formally launching my campaign the first week of April.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  I am running for council because I ask tough, relevant questions like: Where does City of Asheville stand in comparison to the Top 25 high performance municipalities across the nation and free world? I look forward to engaging on our challenges, solutions, and outcomes; including housing, APD, etc.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Jobs for youth: Part of the COA Restructure and Center of Progress platform connected to my candidacy includes phased decommissioning of the Buncombe Tourism Development Authority over five years. Along with what goes in its place is a Community Economic Development 3.0 platform. Youth prosperity is included.

Website: GrantMillin.com

ANTANETTE MOSLEY PORTRAIT

Antanette Mosley

Occupation: Attorney

Background: I am an incumbent City Council member, serving on the Housing and Community Development Committee. I’ve worked at a local affordable housing non-profit and am a practicing attorney.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  A top priority is the provision of affordable housing in our community. Over the past year, rental rates have increased by 25% in our area. My work on the affordable housing committee culminates in the development of affordable housing as well as increased housing supply.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Affordable housing: I work to incentivize the development of affordable housing as well as the utilization of housing voucher holders. Recognizing that market forces determine rental and housing costs, increasing overall housing supply must always be taken into consideration.

Website: MosleyForAvl.com

ALLISON SCOTT PORTRAIT

Allison Scott

Occupation: Director Impact & Innovation Campaign for Southern Equality

Background: My career has included working in IT and project management at Care Partners, Rockwell, Baldor Electric, and ABB. 3 years ago I made the jump from the business world to non-profit work. During that time I have served as the Director of Impact & Innovation at the Campaign for Southern Equality (CSE).

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Equitable Affordable Housing, Community Safety, Transparent Local Government

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Affordable housing: Increase availability of housing with multi-family zoning and non-traditional structures such as tiny homes. Advocating for BIPOC led housing initiatives from the Asheville Reparations Fund. Elevating voices of residents in partnership with local organizational expertise.

Website: AllisonForAsheville.com

SHENEIKA E. SMITH PORTRAIT

Sheneika E. Smith

Occupation: Vice Mayor, Asheville City Council

Background: Elected to Asheville City Council in 2018, appointed Vice Mayor in 2020.  Currently, Chair of Public Safety Committee and Boards and Commissions. Professional experience includes community organizing and event planning, workforce development outreach and recruitment and mental health work.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Restorative Justice (Community and Legal System) ­– reform the justice system with an holistic response to crime and victimization; decreasing recidivism and jail population. County/City Transit Consolidation – conduct a study and operational analysis to evaluate the best consolidation planning.

Give an example of how you would address a particular issue. Affordable housing: Purpose Built Development – creating upward mobility through mixed-income housing options for distressed communities without creating displacement; meeting families where they are economically. A tool that integrates equity into policy; creating a true sense of community and belonging.

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Nina Tovish

no response from candidate

Pick more Winners

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In addition to non-partisan Mayor and City Council contests, the May election includes a non-partisan primary for the Asheville City Schools Board of Education and the partisan primary to choose the Democratic and Republican candidates who will be on November’s general election ballot.

There is no primary contest for an office where the party has only one candidate; that candidate advances to the Nov. ballot.

Registered voters affiliated with one party may not vote in another party’s primary. Unaffiliated voters may choose to cast a Democratic or Republican primary ballot or one with just the non-partisan contests.

On the Democratic Ballot: Candidates for Buncombe County Sheriff

DAVID HURLEY PORTRAIT

David Hurley

Party: Democratic

Occupation: Internet Marketing & Consulting

Background: I have a diverse background made up of military, police, high-risk security and business. I’ve managed security teams in high-risk environment and employees in Asheville and abroad. My wide range of dynamic experiences and skills make me a perfect candidate.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  I will integrate the Sheriff’s Office into the community using the very effective Community Oriented Policing approach. I’ll seek to have the agency CALEA certified, review/rewrite policies, and develop better hiring and qualification standards.

As Sheriff, what steps would you take to enhance community accountability, such as prompt release of law enforcement videos and funding for mental health personnel?  I’ll develop a Community Partnership Committee to help develop policies we operate under & seek to have the agency CALEA certified. I’ll explore the possibility of having mental health professionals assist on certain calls and promote multi-government and agency collaboration to tackle homelessness.

Website: HurleyForSheriff.com

QUENTIN MILLER PORTRAIT

Quentin Miller

Party: Democratic

Occupation: Sheriff of Buncombe County

Background: Quentin Miller was born and raised in Asheville. While in the U.S. Army and stationed in Germany, Quentin met Army Specialist Karen Sconiers. They have been married for 35 years and now have 11 grandkids. In 2018 Quentin was elected as the first African-American Sheriff of Buncombe County.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  The opioids crisis is impacting Buncombe County especially hard, with a very high per capita rate of overdose deaths. Since being elected as Sheriff I have implemented a (MAT) drug treatment program at our county jail to help people enter into long-term recovery and recuse recidivism.

As Sheriff, what steps would you take to enhance community accountability, such as prompt release of law enforcement videos and funding for mental health personnel?  In 2021, Gov. Cooper signed a law that streamlined the release of law enforcement video. I supported this reform. We now have a judge who makes the determination of release. We have mental health clinicians on our payroll and embedded at the County Sheriff’s Office.

Website: QuentinForBuncombe.org; facebook.com/qm4sheriff

On the Republican Ballot: Candidates for Buncombe County Sheriff

ADRIAN (AJ) FOX PORTRAIT

Adrian (AJ) Fox

Party: Republican

Occupation: (retired) NC State Trooper

Background: 40 years in law enforcement: 14 years NC Highway Patrol (retired), 19 years Buncombe County Sheriff Department, 7 years Haywood County Sheriff Department, 2 years, Lake Lure Police Department

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Regain law and order so that residents feel safe and cared for; protect our citizen’s 2nd Amendment rights;  train our officers to be constitutional deputies.

As Sheriff, what steps would you take to enhance community accountability, such as prompt release of law enforcement videos and funding for mental health personnel?  I want to have personnel dedicated to community outreach, to strengthen the relationship between our community and law enforcement, including a wellness program to check on our elderly citizens weekly or even daily if merited.

Website: AJFoxForSheriff.com

BEN JARAMILLO PORTRAIT

Ben Jaramillo

Party: Republican

Occupation: Retired Deputy Sheriff

Background: I retired with 19 years at the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office and over 18 years in the NC Army National Guard in the Infantry and a Military Police Officer.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  Hiring qualified and professional personnel for all divisions of the Sheriff’s Office. Training officers to better recognize mental health situations in the community. Training School Resource Officers to better respond to bullying and mental health situations.

As Sheriff, what steps would you take to enhance community accountability, such as prompt release of law enforcement videos and funding for mental health personnel?  Want to be as transparent as possible but the courts and criminal charges determine the release of such evidence. I want our Governor to find more mental health programs.

Website: Jaramillo4Sheriff.com

JEFF WORLEY PORTRAIT

Jeff Worley

Party: Republican

Occupation: School Director at Asheville-Buncombe Technical College over the Speed Measurement program and assist in their BLET driving program.

Background: I began my career in 1984 as a police officer with both Weaverville and Asheville police depts. In 1999 the NCHP from which I am most recently retired following 30 years of honorable service. I’ve served in a variety of front line supervisory and command level leadership roles over the past 38 years.

My top 2 or 3 priorities if elected:  To establish a new commitment of culture of trust, accountability and a truer sense of community and quality of life. I will develop a Neighborhood Impact Team (from existing resources) to engage consistently with residents to conduct effective community problem solving.

As Sheriff, what steps would you take to enhance community accountability, such as prompt release of law enforcement videos and funding for mental health personnel?  I will always look for ways to openly and fairly communicate to you the successes, failures, challenges and concerns associated with the Sheriff’s Office. An effective relationship together, in my opinion, provides the greatest vehicle for this accountability.

Website: WorleyForBuncombe.com

MORE INFO

Three good reasons for you to vote

  1. Your 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 over 30 North Carolina cities in 2021. Your vote matters!
  2. The City Council makes decisions affecting nearly every part of your life −
    affordable housing, police conduct, new jobs, parks, street repair, transit, neighborhood zoning. But you decide who wins!
  3. Listen to what other voters say about why they’re voting . . .

“. . . too many of my ancestors died for me not to be using my right to vote.” – Kristen Marion

“. . . city elections can be very close, so my one vote could have a big impact.” – Angelica Robles

“. . . it’s not just about who’s president. Who runs local government directly affects me.” – Austin Padilla

“. . . I want someone in city hall fighting for issues important to our community.” – Robert Dawkins

What does the Asheville City Council do?

The Mayor and the six other members of the City Council make a wide range of decisions affecting your life. They hire and supervise the city manager, who hires the police chief and other department heads, who report to the manager. The Council sets policies and priorities and oversees the many functions of local government, including:

  • The Police & Fire Departments
  • Zoning & Building Code Enforcement
  • Economic & Community Development
  • Affordable Housing
  • 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
  • Public Bus Transportation
  • Appointments to Boards & Committees

This 2022 voter guide for Asheville

is produced by Democracy NC and Common Cause, which are not affiliated with any
political party or candidate.

This Guide provides responses from the candidates and vital information about the voting process. Candidates appear here in their order on the ballot. For one response, candidates were asked to choose a specific topic to address from these three options: affordable housing; police accountability and community relations; or jobs for youth.

For questions, call the Buncombe Co. Board of Elections at 828-250-4200 or the Hotline at 888-687-8683. Two useful websites: NCVoter.org and NCVoterGuide.org

Where can I vote early?

Asheville residents may vote at any of the 10 Early Voting locations in Buncombe County listed below. You may also register to vote during Early Voting (but not on Election Day). See #1 under Ways to Vote on the back page. The 10 locations are open Monday-Friday, April 28-May 13, 8 am-7:30 pm; Saturday & Sunday, May 7 & May 8, 10 am-3 pm; and Saturday, May 14, 8 am-3 pm.

  • Black Mountain Library, 105 N. Dougherty St., Black Mountain
  • East Asheville Library, 3 Avon Rd., Asheville
  • Enka/Candler Library, 1404 Sand Hill Rd., Candler
  • Fairview Library, 1 Taylor Rd., Fairview
  • Leicester Library, 1561 Alexander Rd., Leicester
  • Reynolds Village, 61 N. Merrimon Ave., Suite 105, Asheville
  • South Buncombe Library, 260 Overlook Rd., Asheville
  • Weaverville Community Center, 60 Lakeshore Dr., Weaverville
  • Wesley Grant Southside Center, 285 Livingston St., Asheville
  • West Asheville Library, 942 Haywood Rd., Asheville

Asheville City Schools Board of Education

A new state law says voters in the ACS district will elect its Board members. Four will be elected this year. Voters in the May primary will narrow the field to 8 candidates and then pick the 4 winners in November. There are 9 candidates on the primary ballot: Pepi Acebo; Liza English-Kelly; Miri Massachi; Amy Ray; Sara Shea; Rebecca Strimer; Sarah Thornburg; Jesse J. Warren; and William (Bill) Young, Jr.

Contests on the Democratic Party’s Primary Ballot for May 2022

For Asheville Voters, Depending on Your Home’s District

Offices on Democratic Ballot Candidates
US Senate Many candidates
US House of Representatives, District 11 Many candidates
NC State Senate, District 49 Breeden vs. Kilgore vs. Mayfield
Buncombe Co. Commissioners, District 1 Branyon vs. Whitesides
Buncombe County Sheriff Hurley vs. Miller
Buncombe County District Attorney Booth vs. Bowman vs. Edwards vs. Williams
Asheville Mayor Non-partisan contest, many candidates
Asheville City Council Members Non-partisan contest, many candidates
Asheville City Schools Board of Education Non-partisan contest, many candidates

Contests on the Republican Party’s Primary Ballot for May 2022

For Asheville Voters, Depending on Your Home’s District

Offices on Republican Ballot Candidates
US Senate Many candidates
US House of Representatives, District 11 Many candidates
NC State Senate, District 46 Crawford vs. Daniel
NC House of Representatives, District 115 Bhakta vs. Higgins
NC Supreme Court Justice, Seat 5 Allen vs. Prince vs. Wood
NC Court of Appeals Judge, Seat 9 Smith vs. Stroud
NC Court of Appeals Judge, Seat 11 Allen vs. Stading
Buncombe County Sheriff Fox vs. Jaramillo vs. Worley
Asheville Mayor Non-partisan contest, many candidates
Asheville City Council Members Non-partisan contest, many candidates
Asheville City Schools Board of Education Non-partisan contest, many candidates

Contests on the Libertarian Party’s Primary Ballot for May 2022

For Asheville Voters

There are no party primary contests. Libertarian candidates will appear on the Nov. general election ballot. Registered Libertarians will see only the contests for Asheville Mayor, City Council, and City Board of Education on their May ballot.

Preview all the choices on your entire ballot at ncvoter.org/your-ballot-and-precinct
Questions? Call 888-OUR-VOTE (888-687-8683) or visit NCVoter.org

Adapted from voter guides by Democracy NC & Common Cause.