Amy Midis is running for Knoxville City Council At-Large Seat C.
I moved to Knoxville 22 years ago with my husband, just weeks after our wedding. He was pursuing a job opportunity and I had applied and been accepted to the University of Tennessee MBA program, where I graduated in 1999 with a concentration in Finance and New Venture Analysis.
My professional career has been in Healthcare and I am currently employed with Covenant Health as a Financial Analyst. I have two daughters, ages 10 and 16, and serve as the caregiver to my father-in-law.
Who are you and what brought you into this race?
I have lived in my neighborhood of Forest Heights for 21 years. I served as President of the neighborhood association for six years where I became known as a consensus-building leader. This experience led to a greater role in city-wide neighborhood initiatives.
I am active in several community groups like the Bearden Village Council and have been appointed by Mayor Rogero to serve on several public boards such as the Neighborhood Advisory Council and the Public Property Naming Committee. I have worked with many City Council members and I realize the importance of having local representatives who are honest, hardworking, dedicated to serving the public, and aspire for great things for Knoxville.
We need City Council members that will educate themselves on all issues that affect our city, work to find agreeable solutions, and when a compromise can’t be found, make the tough decision needed for the well-being of Knoxville and its residents.
This is what I think makes a great City Council member, this is the type of City Council member I will be, and I am running to ensure that this type of representation is on the ballot for City Council At Large, Seat C!
How do you feel about Recode Knoxville, both as a concept for overhauling the city’s zoning code and its handling by the current administration?
The zoning ordinance does not dictate what type of development will happen in the City, but what the potential might be for future development. The existing zoning ordinance was codified over 50 years ago and placed an importance on parking and suburban living.
I believe current and future residents of Knoxville will be better served by fostering a more sustainable, urban-style development that allows for greater demand for local retail, housing options, and placing an importance on alternative forms of transportation including biking, walking, and bus lines.
My current role as a neighborhood leader is to engage the community and represent neighborhood interests. I am often disappointed with the lack of public response; however, I understand the many demands life places on our residents. Individuals and families are extremely busy, which is exactly why we need actively engaged local representation that will be your voice on City Council. As your city council member,
I will be engaging all communities, so even if you can’t be there, someone with your same concerns will be. I promise to be ready to make immediate changes if any unintended consequence occurs under the new zoning ordinance.
What should the Knoxville Police Department do to balance the needs of keeping the community safe without serving as an overbearing presence in communities?
While City Council is not responsible for managing the Knoxville Police Department, I do feel keeping the community safe is the most important role of our local government. KPD officers are currently understaffed and therefore, required to serve mandatory overtime.
My biggest concern as a city council member is making certain that our department has the resources they need to effectively serve the community, and retain its existing officers.
Share your plan for addressing homelessness beyond the efforts which have already been tried?
I support the efforts of the current city administration and its partnerships with multiple non-profits. We need to continue to provide more permanent supportive housing, as well as increasing the supply of affordable housing. Many members of Knoxville’s homeless population come from surrounding local municipalities who do not currently provide shelter and services for their homeless population.
I would like to work with other local municipal governments to seek their financial or supportive assistance. Also, I would like to see more independent data collection and surveying of this issue from city administration.
We need to ensure that our resources are addressing this compounding problem and that we understand the changing needs of this growing population.
Would you ever support a property tax increase?
I would never exclude a tax increase, knowing that it could be the best option for the financial health and stability of Knoxville and its residents.
What is your vision for the City of Knoxville in the 4 / 8 years ahead?
I want to ensure that Knoxville continues to provide job opportunities for current and new residents who move here to create a new life for themselves and their family. I want new businesses to thrive and that new industries to see Knoxville as an attractive place to locate.
I want all residents to have access to affordable housing, strong education, good healthcare, and healthy food options. I want to facilitate creative ways to add bike lanes and sidewalks to allow for sustainable forms of transportation. I want to preserve and promote the character of our dynamic neighborhoods and protect our existing greenspaces.
Finally, I want all areas of Knoxville to receive actively – engaged local representation from their city council members. This is my vision for Knoxville, and I ask for your vote for City Council At Large, Seat C.