Ward 1: Margaret E. “Peggy” Ross (D, incumbent)

Margaret E. “Peggy” Ross (photo provided)

Margaret E. “Peggy” Ross (photo provided)

If elected, what is the single biggest issue that you will address in your home ward?

The biggest issue facing Ward 1 is one that is going to be a challenge to the whole city. How do we best rezone the waterfront while ensuring broad public access and enjoyment, while maintaining its natural beauty and promoting its link to Main Street business and street life?

We need to develop a plan that will ensure that Metro-North (and other projects) will develop within our borders as an asset and destination that serve Beacon’s best interests. We got started by zoning the linkage zone but now we need to finish the task.

What is the single biggest issue that the City Council must address?

It would be shortsighted to pick just one single issue since so many consequential issues are intertwined: Smart planning, development, parking and maintaining aging infrastructure while holding the line on taxes form a nexus of challenges that we need to consider as a whole.

We have great talent in Beacon. In the past, the community has pooled resources in developing our comprehensive plan (due for updating) and rezoning. I would hope that we can engage talented citizens from all sectors of the Beacon community in planning and envisioning our future.

What initiative are you most proud of from your previous term?

I’m proud that the initiatives that I’ve originated are on-going, future-oriented projects that will benefit Beacon in the long run. Among the initiatives I’ve founded or co-founded are PlanBeacon, SolarizeBeacon and other sustainably based initiatives. My hope and intention is that sustainable planning and renewable energy initiatives will continue whether I remain in office or not.

What skills or experience qualifies you to serve as a council member?

I have been a teacher, school principal and director of several non-profits and charitable foundations, including the Schwab Charitable Fund, which had $100 million in assets when I left. I was the founding director of Principal for a Day, a citywide program that brought 1,000 civic and community leaders into the New York City public schools and then nurtured partnerships between businesses and schools.

But equally important to running various large-scale programs, I am a grandparent and care deeply about our future and the future of our city, which may be my strongest qualification.


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