By Brandon Martin
Pearson and her husband, Will, are raising three children. Tammy Pearson’s motto in her campaign for a seat on Martinsville City Council is “For a Better Community.”
As the only candidate not in favor of a city reversion, Pearson said she isn’t afraid to stand up for her ideas.
Pearson, 54, said the city needs to thoroughly consider all options — not just reversion.
“I am very concerned because, if we revert, we could easily see an increase in property taxes as well as the doubling of Machinery and Tools tax and BPOL (Business, Professional and Occupational License) tax,” she said. “This is far too harmful for small businesses and it negatively impacts property owners. This is also a detriment to bringing in new businesses.”
Pearson, a small business owner, said that reversion may also result in an increase in taxes for county residents.
“We need a positive, not adversarial, partnership with the county,” Pearson said. “Let’s come to the table and discuss services we can consolidate that would be a good move for both the county and city.”
Pearson said that it appears that the city is solvent rather than bankrupt, and she proposes attacking the root of the problem by focusing on bringing in new sources of revenue through economic development efforts; keeping businesses thriving and located in the city; attracting new residents who will benefit from the city’s fiber network, outdoor surroundings and activities.
Additionally, Pearson said there may be room to “cut fat” by renegotiating/reconsidering contracts like the one the city made with AMP Ohio.
While she would be in the minority on council in terms of reversion, Pearson said she is “not afraid to go against the status quo, stand up for what is right, and voice issues and concerns of private citizens and businesses.”
If elected, “I will garner support and consensus to push forward ideas and programs,” she said, and added that having an open ear is an advantage when speaking with constituents.
“People listen to people who listen,” she said. “You have to step out of your own box and see through the eyes of your neighbors. That’s what I’ll do through consistent two-way communication with local residents.”
As part of that goal, Pearson is committed to government transparency.
“I don’t believe in back door deals, not sharing information with the public and sweeping things under the rug,” Pearson said. “The council must admit when a mistake is made, learn from it, try to rectify if at all possible, and then move on to more positive action the next time.”
According to Pearson, work needs to be done to accomplish her vision of breathing life into the city’s motto of “A City Without Limits.”
“We’re not there yet, but I have faith we can be,” she said. “I want to bring forth a better, more vibrant community with a robust economy, thriving uptown, friendly service, highest level of educational opportunities and a clear map for our future.”
So far, Pearson said a key ingredient has been missing to reaching that vision.
“We can always talk about what’s good or bad about our city, but we must take action if we want to make our city great. Focus on economic development, sustainability and declining population. Work with the EDC (Economic Development Corp.), Chamber (of Commerce) and others, such as the ‘Move to Martinsville’ group, to bring in and keep new businesses as well as private citizens,” she said.
“Honestly, I didn’t consider it until I was asked to run by some of my family, friends and fellow business owners,” Pearson said. “They saw in me something I didn’t see in myself–the passion and ability to make positive changes happen.”
Pearson said the toll taken on the business during the coronavirus pandemic also provided motivation.
“Now that we are able to do some business again, I want to make it easier to start and sustain a business in our city,” she added. “I am not the kind of person to stand by and just watch things happen. I want to help put into action creative, needed service and initiatives for both our citizens and businesses.”
Pearson and her husband, Will, have three children–Jarrett (18), Alexandra (17), Thaniel (15), and the family has adopted dogs and cats. She has a Master of Science degree in Business Management and a Bachelor’s of Arts in English. Tammy Pearson also enjoys reading, exercise; volunteer activities; and enjoying time with friends and family.
Pearson and Nelson Edwards are seeking a post on Martinsville City Council against incumbents Kathy Lawson, Jim Woods and Chad Martin.