Candidates for mayor Cyndi Lamm and Leirion Gaylor Baird took questions on their policies at the Chamber of Commerce Lunch Wednesday.
Gaylor Baird was in favor of the need for a new downtown library on the Pershing Center Block. “I absolutely support a public/private partnership, and I think that’s the pathway forward for a project like this.”
Lamm believed differently, “we have other options, and I believe that rather than spending $40-50 million we should look at other options that aren’t going to be as costly to the taxpayers.” Lamm said the library should remodel the adjacent YWCA building for extra space, and put the Pershing Block up for sale.
Lamm also said she feels the City is holding back growth in affordable housing. “Rather than more government in order to tend to providing affordable housing, it would be better served if government got out of the way.”
Gaylor Baird, on the other hand, believes the city government has played a large role in growth saying “part of the success of Lincoln, this trajectory we’re on, this amazing path that you all have helped create for Lincoln.”
Both candidates did agree that more affordable housing and workforce development are both badly needed in order to continue Lincoln’s growth.
Gaylor Baird also said the City has created a good climate for startups, “as they compete for capital that is scarce, they lift each other up. They are a great example of how Lincoln has a welcoming economy.”
Lamm believes that the City has always chosen the expensive path. “In the last twenty years, the go to for challenges of the City has been more taxes.”