Dave’s Plan

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I’ve watched our city evolve to become a popular regional destination. New businesses have rejuvenated our downtown and industrial sector, and new residents have strengthened our neighborhoods.  Our challenge is to find ways to provide the services and quality of life needed for our continued success at the lowest costs.

Financial Health

As your Mayor, my first priority has been to work with Council on financial strategies for our long-term success.  In my first month as Mayor, I initiated a two-year budget process for Ferndale, challenging us to look further ahead and anticipate shortfalls earlier.  This year we expanded to a three-year budget, and we now have a balanced budget for 2017, 2018 and 2019!  We’ve also lowered the tax rate two of the past three years for a total of 2 mils ($140 for the average homeowner) -something few other communities or taxing authorities in our region have managed to accomplish.  I’ll continue to look for ways to reduce costs while delivering quality services, which I consider my greatest responsibility as steward of your hard-earned money.

Business Friendly

A healthy commercial and industrial sector is important to our long-term growth, and I want Ferndale to be the friendliest, easiest city to open or operate a business in Oakland County. I created the Mayor’s Business Council to help make sure we meet that commitment.  Since then, non-residential construction investment is up and our business vacancy rate is down to its lowest level in years.  In partnership with the Chamber of Commerce and the DDA, we’re united behind a common goal — an environment in Ferndale where businesses – and the jobs and tax revenue they provide – thrive and grow.

Safe, Engaged Community

Our downtown gets lots of attention, but it’s icing on the cake of what was already a strong community.  Safe neighborhoods, outstanding police and fire service, a modern library, innovative programs for seniors and youth, good roads and sewers and outstanding city services may not make headlines, but they are the foundation of what makes Ferndale work.  For instance, our new community policing model is helping ensure a strong partnership between law enforcement and our residents and visitors – including our new Hope Not Handcuffs program to use police to help get people addicted to drugs or alcohol the treatment they need.  And the new dog park, play equipment and walking trails are just the beginning of transformation of all our parks to make them a more vital part of our neighborhoods.


Quality of Life

Ferndale is a unique and vibrant city, and it’s important not to neglect the events and programs that contribute to a special quality of life that distinguishes Ferndale from most other cities.  We boast an award-winning downtown with a diverse appeal; last year we extended downtown improvements east on 9 Mile to bring even more developement to that end of the district.  We’re home to special events, like the Woodward Dream Cruise, DIY Street Fair/Art Fair and Ferndale Pride, that draw tens of thousands each year.  And we adopted a Welcoming City policy to make sure everyone, including immigrants, feel included and valued in our city.  As one of ‘Motown’s Downtowns,’ we may take our fun seriously, but these things also help us lead the region in the economic prosperity.