Name as it appears on the ballot: John E. Haynes
Office being sought: Alderman At-Large
Occupation: Health wellness coach at the Hearth at Franklin
Family: Wife, Julia; five children and nine grandchildren
Community Activities: I’ve been a pastor for 22-plus years, Leadership Franklin alumnus, served on the board of directors for Community Housing Partnership (CHP) for eight years and served as the executive director of United Community Resource Foundation (UCRF), a faith-based nonprofit organization, for seven years.
Have you ever held public office? I’ve never held public office.
Why did you decide to seek the office of alderman?
My decision to run for at-large alderman was based on my being a native of Franklin who is concerned by the rapid growth and changes occurring in my hometown. Through my experience as a resident and pastor in Franklin, I have had many one-on-one conversations with residents about the lack of diverse housing options and economic development opportunities. Also, I have served on several boards and committees tasked with working on these issues.
What do you feel are the top three most pertinent issues facing Franklin?
Quality of life issues, such as appropriately placed/sized growth, traffic control and upgrading infrastructure, are the three biggest issues facing Franklin. The appropriate planned growth of our city has been addressed through Envision Franklin. The board of mayor and aldermen, along with the planning commission, must continue to monitor and adhere to this well-thought-out vision for our city’s growth. Traffic control/abatement will require coordination and cooperation with various entities (developers, state, county). In a nutshell, infrastructure upgrades will require prioritization and a lot of money.
As Franklin grows, the city’s needs become more complex. Housing and land prices are rising and there is a shortage of workforce housing. Do you think this is an issue? How would you address it?
The shortage of workforce housing is an issue that needs to be addressed. Unfortunately, this issue cannot be addressed solely by government. It is the responsibility of both the private and the public sector. As a member of the board of mayor and aldermen, I would support efforts to encourage developers to provide more affordable housing by permitting higher densities (within reason) or a reduction in fees or a combination of both.
What does “smart growth” mean to you, and what specific strategies would you employ to achieve it?
Smart growth is not just about the development of diverse housing, building and transportation options. Smart growth is growing the city in a balanced way. That is, to help the city become more economically prosperous, socially equitable and environmentally sustainable. I am not a city planner nor land-use specialist. However, several great ones work for the city of Franklin. I would depend on them for guidance to help navigate the complicated issues related to “smart growth” while keeping in mind what’s best for Franklin.
Traffic is becoming a big problem in Franklin. How would you address transportation as the city grows?
Our traffic problem has already been studied and addressed by Franklin Connect, the city’s comprehensive transportation network plan (CTNP). This plan includes not only roadway components, but transit, bicycle and pedestrian facilities, also linkages with land use. Franklin Connect projects traffic grid needs based on projected population growth through the year 2040. My plan would be to utilize this useful tool and to make adjustments and modifications as necessary.