Why did you decide to run for the Crothersville Town Council?
I feel that it is everyone’s responsibility to serve their community. I have lived in Crothersville for nine years and have served as a member of the Crothersville-Vernon Township Volunteer Fire Department and as a reserve officer for the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department. I feel that serving on the town council is another way I can give back to the town of Crothersville. I decided to run for the Crothersville Town Council because I saw several needs in the community that need to be addressed. One being the disconnect that has developed between the townspeople and local law enforcement. Small-town community policing has to be a partnership between the police department and the community to succeed. I also would like to look into our town utility rates. Our utility rates are substantially higher than other surrounding communities. There has to be a reason for this, and one of the first things I would do as a council member is to uncover that reason and find a way to resolve this. Another pressing need in certain areas of the town is the deteriorating infrastructure, such as storm drainage, sidewalks, curbs and other areas that need improvement. Along with this is the condition of our town parks. These are resources that could be developed into assets for our town instead of liabilities.
What do you think you can bring to the town council?
I feel that one of the biggest strengths I can bring to the town council is my experience in law enforcement and emergency services. Someone that understands both what the town needs from its local emergency services and what emergency services needs from the town to afford the townspeople the service and protection they deserve can be a valuable asset and resource. I also think that I could bring both a fresh set of eyes and some common sense to the town council. I am not a politician, and I do not have lofty political goals. I honestly just want to see the town of Crothersville live up to its potential. Small towns are often overlooked, but they are the heart of our county and our state. I want to see Crothersville grow, develop and prosper.
What’s the most pressing issue facing the town at this time?
I feel the most pressing issue for the town at this time is the lack of transparency and communication between the council and the townspeople. I have been to town hall several times over the past nine years regarding various issues, and I have never really received a clear and concise answer to any of my questions. I have also been to several town board meetings and found it disappointing that very few townspeople attend. For the partnership between the council and the townspeople to work, we are going to need to increase and strengthen the flow of information and communication.
How you plan to address it?
I would like to make town council meetings community events. The citizens of Crothersville should feel welcome at town council meetings. I would like to spread the word and encourage the people of Crothersville to participate in their local government. The town council meeting should not be seen only as a place to complain. Town board meetings should be a time when the council and the town get together to discuss community matters and make the best decisions possible for the residents of Crothersville.
How would you help the council be fiscally responsible with taxpayers’ money?
I think the first thing the town needs to do is sit down and take a long, hard and honest look at what we spend money on. We need to determine what expenditures are “needs” and what are “wants.” Too many times, I see money that I have a stake in as a taxpayer being spend on “wants” when “needs” are going unmet. It is the town’s responsibility to manage the town’s resources in a manner that meets the “needs” with as little stress to the taxpayer as possible.
Name: J.D. Woods
Occupation: Field officer with Jackson Jennings Community Corrections
Education: Brownstown Central High School; Olivet Nazarene University
Family: Lives with wife and two stepchildren in Crothersville