To the Editor,
I am a subscriber to the Mount Airy News and read your paper regularly. I have followed your political coverage of the city commissioner race as well as the coverage of the Mount Airy Redevelopment Commission and Mount Airy Downtown Inc. After reading your Friday (Sept. 18, 2015) headline, I found it necessary to clear up a few misconceptions regarding my brother, Jerry Taylor, a candidate for City Commissioner.
I would like it on record that I was the first person to discuss the possibility of Jerry Taylor running for City Commissioner. The coverage provided by the News made it clear that a lack of qualified candidates had filed for the commissioner race just days before the deadline. I met Jerry in my office in Pilot Mountain and asked him to consider a run for commissioner as I believe he is well qualified for the job. He has a History degree from Appalachian State and has followed city politics for years. His many years as the manager of the local Sherwin Williams store provided the perfect training ground for a future commissioner. As a retiree with his own business, he had the time necessary to devote to the job. He and I discussed pros and cons of getting into politics. After much consideration and discussions with friends and family, he filed just before the deadline.
Tom Joyce’s article in Friday’s News correctly states that Ted Ashby, the head of Mount Airy Downtown, contributed $500 to Jerry’s campaign. The article does not mention that Jerry and Ted have been friends since the 1960’s and that Jerry asked Ted for his support prior to filing. I am a Mount Airy city property owner and I too contributed $500 to Jerry’s campaign; however, my contribution was not noted in the article.
I read Sunday’s Our View on the Editorial page and laughed out loud at the implication that Jerry Taylor’s run for office is a result of a “coup…that would give the redevelopment board free reign.” Jerry Taylor has opinions and views of city government including the redevelopment of the Spencer’s project and has voiced those opinions publically. His votes as a city commissioner will be based on research, thoughtful consideration, and his desire to best serve the citizens of Mount Airy…not on campaign contributions.
Tammy Taylor York