Candidate: Alexa Little
Metro Council District 16
Occupation: “Entrepreneur, Property Manager, Zumba Instructor”
Previous candidacy/offices held: “None”
Community experience: “I grew up with activist parents who spent most of my childhood fighting to save the Germantown neighborhood from becoming the city’s industrial dumping grounds. I have been involved in picket lines to stop the 1200 block of 5th ave north from becoming an emissions testing site and vividly remember my parents laying down in front of the bulldozer until they were arrested. We arranged neighborhood watches and phone-trees to keep connected as we fought to get police presence and stop signs installed. Later in life I moved to East Nashville and then The Nations. Very active in both communities, I joined the events committees, hosted neighborhood gatherings and helped to create a since of unity. I attended public school, am a TSU grad and have taught adult community education classes at multiple community centers across Nashville for almost 13 years. I have volunteered for Hands on Nashville during covid, the 2020 Tornado and the Christmas bombing and often visit nursing homes and retirement homes.”
What will be your top three priorities on the Council?
“Traffic Calming, Guided development and Community outreach, especially amongst the international community.”
What is the biggest issue facing your district? How would you approach it?
“Traffic calming. District 16 is a major cut-through during traffic times, our major intersections are quite dangerous and will only get worse. Most of these intersections also are lacking crosswalks, sidewalks, bike lanes and safe medians. We need safer streets and lighter through traffic. I am already working with the Civic Design Center to try to come up with a plan for safer walkways. We held a Walk Audit of the neighborhood in April and are currently in the planning stages for implementation.”
Much of the city’s developmental focus, like plans for a new East Bank, have focused on downtown. What’s your vision for downtown?
“I would love to see a more walkable downtown with less congestion. Close broadway on the weekends and encourage people to walk/bike/take public transit to get around. I also envision a downtown that locals want to go to again, one that is a little more tame and feels like the Music City we grew to love rather than the Nash Vegas we have become.”
Did you or would you have voted to approve the new Titans stadium financing legislation?
“I would not have approved the bill as passed. There is a lot missing from the deal that I fear will bite us in the end.”
Does Metro need more police officers beyond the unfilled positions?
“That a big YES from someone who lives in a district that has a major lack of police presence.”
What do you think of the current framework passed by the council around LPR (license plate readers) usage? Do you think Metro should allow facial recognition technology to be used downtown?
“The big problem I see with LPRs is the handling of the data. Where is it being stored and who is its being sold to? I am ok with the information being used and held locally but once it has been sold, I quickly gets out of control and becomes a privacy issue.”
Do you think a property tax rate adjustment will be needed in the next 4 years? Why or why not?
“Yes. Our property taxes were not raised for a long time and now we are playing catch up. A big problem last time was that people who could afford to pay the increased rate appealed it and won. We also need to make sure the hardship program for those who can not afford their property taxes is easily accessible.”
Do you view your role in the Council as leading your district on issues or simply reflecting the views of the district’s residents?
“I view my role as leading the district on issues. District 16 sits in a very opportunistic position. With the soccer stadium just north of us, change is inevitably coming and we have the opportunity to steer that change in a direction that works best for our community if we can came together to create a cohesive vision of the future.”
How do you view the relationship of the city and Council to the General Assembly in the face of adverse legislation from the state?
“The state needs Nashville to succeed. We are the economic powerhouse of the state and we should act as such. It is the job of the city council to protect Nashville. While we need to work on our relationship with the general assembly to regain trust, we need to do what is best for Nashville and elect a strong Mayor and Council to be assertive.”
The city is experiencing an affordability crisis. What is the council’s role in creating more housing for buyers and renters in Nashville?
“First and foremost, we need to take a hard look at the definition of “affordable” and stop pretending it means $300k properties. We should encourage developers who will build communities that are designed with public transportation in mind and on a budget the working class can actually afford. Lets do a little research on what other major cities have done and stop acting like its not possible.”
What improvements do you think WeGo should make during the next four years? Would you back creation of a dedicated funding source?
“WeGo needs a complete overhaul and dedicated funding if Nashville is going to be a bustling metropolis in 30 years. Buses should be running more often and with 24/7 service. Cross-section routes that do not require bringing more, unnecessary congestion to the downtown area need to be utilized. The main WeGo terminal and the commuter train need be located at the same spot for a more fluid transfer between the two. There should be a direct and frequent line to the airport from anywhere in the city. There should be dedicated bus lanes throughout most of Nashville to make public transit a more viable and faster option than driving.”
Second-quarter campaign finance disclosure
Cash on hand: $1,245
Link to full disclosure here
Pre-General campaign finance disclosure
Cash on hand: $12,372.49
Link to full disclosure here