A teacher and mother who says the values of community, cooperation, and compassion will guide her campaign has announced she is running for Livingston County Commissioner in District 2.
Jennifer Garcia has filed nominating papers for the seat covering Oceola and Deerfield Townships, plus the southwest corner of Hartland Township.
As commissioner, Jennifer said she would work to make sure the county budget matches the priorities of the community, and she said she would cooperate with constituents to make that happen.
“Transparency and inclusion are important if the County Commission is to make sound decisions that benefit all constituents,” she said, noting the dire consequences in Flint when community voices were ignored during the water crisis.
Right now, she said, women in the community are underrepresented on the board, with just two on the nine-member board.
One priority for her community, she said, is better roads and safer walking and bike paths, with crosswalks. In some areas of the district, she said, it’s hard to walk or bicycle safely to schools, recreational areas, and stores. Young families are looking for more walkable communities so that children can learn independence and responsibility by traveling safely to where they want to go without having to use a car, she said.
Jennifer said other aspects of the district’s health and safety need to be addressed with compassion, specifically the area’s opioid abuse problem. She believes the county should join a lawsuit against several large drug manufacturers to recover the cost of dealing with opioid addiction.
“While I believe in legal consequences for breaking the law, for those who abuse drugs, have mental issues and domestic problems there is a better way. First and foremost is the health and safety of the community. The best way to accomplish this is to support the existing treatment courts in Livingston County,” she said, noting such courts solve underlying problems of those with addictions and result in fewer repeat offenders.
“As County Commissioner I will support treatment programs, advocate for grant funding from the State and provide additional support, new ideas and resources to expand on their success,” she said.
Jennifer lives in Hartland Township with her husband Frank and their three children. She teaches in Ann Arbor public schools and is a member of the Ann Arbor Education Association and the Michigan Education Association. Besides her 11 years as a teacher, Jennifer also was in sports medicine for five years.
As a union member herself who grew up in a union household, she said she will fight to make sure the county pays fair wages to its employees. “I firmly believe that high-quality jobs and the right to collective bargaining are the foundations of America’s middle class,” she said.
People wishing more information on Garcia’s campaign may follow her on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/JenniferGarciaforLCC/.
(Paid for by Livingston County Democratic Executive Committee, 8028 Grand River, Woodland Plaza Suite 7, Brighton, MI 48114. Labor donated. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate committee.)