Gray seeking office

Published 5:32 pm Saturday, August 25, 2012

Sandra Gray is one of many candidates who say the city of Atmore needs improvement. It’s hard for her to talk about improving the city of Atmore without mentioning her nephew Kendrick Dortch. The wounds are still fresh from this summer, when Dortch was tragically killed by a minor just outside his business on Ridgeley Street.

Gray has addressed some of the key issues she will look to improve if she is elected to be on the city council representing District 5, with crime being one of the key issues.

“I think crime in Atmore isn’t a personal entity. It’s everybody’s problem,” Gray said. “When somebody does a crime, they need to be stopped.”

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Dortch was a mere 38 years old and a productive member of the community, owning a successful local business and had plans for another development.

“He was trying to develop a recreation center to keep the kids off the street,” Gray said. “Parents need to be held accountable for where their children are at night. We should have a curfew because if it’s going to save lives, then we need to have it.”

Gray noted that many of the constituents in her district are elderly. From talking with them personally, she has detected strong concern over the issue of crime.

“They don’t need that added stress,” Gray said.

Gray volunteers with several local organizations from the local chapter of the American Red Cross to being Vice President of the Concerned Citizens of Atmore. Through her volunteer work, she has gone to local senior centers to help seniors understand important issues like resources available to them and avoiding things like fraud.

When it comes to business, she said she is steadfastly committed to helping Atmore grow.

“I think jobs in Atmore are picking up because of the Creek Nation. They have put Atmore on the map,” Gray said. “One of my main goals is to make sure we have industries here. That way, we can create jobs for people that live here.”

While outside businesses can bring jobs to Atmore, Gray said she is especially concerned for the welfare of local businesses that are already here.

“My heart goes out to business owners because they struggle with the economy,” Gray said.

She said part of her plan would be to support local businesses in any way possible. In the interest of safety, she would like to see more monitoring of local businesses as well, whether the business is downtown or in a rural location.

“The quality of life in the city of Atmore could be a whole lot better,” Gray said.

Her plan to improve the quality of life involves listening to the people of the community. She said she would make a grass-roots effort involving here going door to door and street to street.

“I would like to be the first elected person to make committees go out into the communities and listen to the people,” Gray said.

Beyond listening to citizens of the community, Gray said having elected officials with integrity is required for a community to enjoy a high level quality of life.

“The quality of life comes from leadership. You have to have leadership you can trust,” Gray said. “It’s the people and the leadership that makes the difference. The quality of life should be so strong that people come to Atmore from everywhere.”

Gray said her greatest qualities include: dedication, vision, and willingness.

“My main goal is to make sure District 5 has a voice in the city. I’m going to make sure I’m a council person they can depend on,” Gray said. “My door will be open and my phone line will be open. I will serve my district with pride. I want them to know me, to know they can call me and I will take care of it and if I can’t, I know someone who will.”

Gray concluded by saying if citizens in District 5 vote for her, they will be voting for someone who will work tirelessly toward improving the city of Atmore.

“I just want a change for the city of Atmore,” Gray said. “A change so citizens feel good about where they live.”