2019 Candidate Questionnaire – COMMISSIONER, TOWN OF PITTSBORO

Kyle Shipp

Posted 10/11/19

Kyle Shipp

Date/place of birth: February 8, 1984; Flint, Michigan

Current occupation: Engineer

Campaign website/social media: kyleforpittsboro.org

Family: Wife, Diana Tarallo

Party …

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2019 Candidate Questionnaire – COMMISSIONER, TOWN OF PITTSBORO

Kyle Shipp

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Kyle Shipp

Date/place of birth: February 8, 1984; Flint, Michigan

Current occupation: Engineer

Campaign website/social media: kyleforpittsboro.org

Family: Wife, Diana Tarallo

Party affiliation: Unaffiliated

Current and previous elected offices held or sought & terms of service: None

Campaign manager (if applicable): Self

Campaign treasurer: Self

Why are you seeking this office?: I’ve learned a lot on the Planning Board about how Pittsboro works and development in the Town. I want to use my experience to maintain the culture, character and environment of Pittsboro while we continue to progress and grow.

What is your understanding of the responsibilities of the office you seek, and in one sentence, why do you believe you’re qualified to fill that role?: Represent the people of Pittsboro (both in town and in the ETJ) and be the technical interface between town staff and residents. I bring a technical perspective combined with an ability to communicate.  

One of the most important decisions that elected officials make is on the annual budget, which includes spending and tax rates. Do you have a budgeting philosophy? What’s more important to you — spending more to allocate resources to needed programs or cutting spending and keeping the tax rate low?: My budgeting philosophy challenges the idea of simply cutting vs. taxing, I believe we can use the town’s current resources more efficiently to maintain Pittsboro’s infrastructure and services. However, there are a number of major improvement projects, many without funding, on the horizon. The current and future Town Board has its work cut out for it, and I would like to take part in creating a solution.

Give us two goals that are specific, measurable and attainable you would have if elected: 1. Improved communication & engagement of what is happening in town government via upgrades to existing systems: Video access to town meetings; Access to town information online (website, announcements, social media). 2. Update, vet, and put into place vital guiding documents which regulate development and preserve Pittsboro’s unique character: Unified Development Ordinance (UDO), Future Land Use Plan, Comprehensive Plan.

The Commissioner’s main responsibility is to place votes on issues crucial to the town. What would be your philosophy on choosing whether or not to vote for an item? Do you have an example of a similar decision in the past?: The residents of Pittsboro elect commissioners to represent them. Recently, the Town Board has considered a number of projects which do not have public support, but which are legal and allowable within town’s outdated guiding documents. These situations will continue to happen until we have finished our UDO and updated our Future Land Use Plan and Comprehensive Plan to reflect residents’ vision for the future. These vital documents will make it easier for responsible developers to do business in Pittsboro, while also retaining our historic, small-town identity. An example of this situation would be the recent approval of the Eagles gas station and car wash. While the developer did work with the town to design an enhanced facade, ultimately this is a poor use of site which will negatively affect Pittsboro’s historic center. However, due to the town’s outdated Land Use Plan and lack of UDO, it is a completely legal and allowable use of the site, rendering the Planning & Town Boards unable to prevent its approval.

Pittsboro is on the edge of a growing area and will soon be growing itself, if projections hold true. How do you think that reality would affect your decision-making as a board member?: We have to make plans further out than the next four years and based on the reality of development in the next 15-20 years. There will be development and changes but we have the opportunity right now to shape and direct that.

What do you think are Pittsboro’s three best features?: Community, nature, arts.

What are three areas where Pittsboro can improve?: Plan for Affordable Housing and Workforce Housing. Access to government and information for in-town and ETJ residents. Defined cadence for update of existing plans.

If you are not elected, what steps will you take to serve Pittsboro?: Continue to serve on Pittsboro Planning Board. Continue to serve local veterans through the Pittsboro VFW. Continue to serve on the Chatham County Affordable Housing Advisory Committee.

Biographical Facts

Political/government hero: Jim Mattis

Favorite book: “The World Until Yesterday” by Jared Diamond

Book most recently read: “A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman

Favorite film: “A Beautiful Mind”

Hobbies: Woodworking

Church/civic involvement: Senior Vice Commander of Pittsboro VFW. Volunteer docent for Small Museum of Folk Art.

Personal motto or one-line philosophy: “Simplify.”

Strongest childhood ambition: Garbage man or robotics.

Most significant life goal you’ve accomplished: Found a career that I enjoy where I also met my wife.

Goal you haven’t accomplished yet: Visit Alaska to complete all 50 states.


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