©2019 Paid for by Friends of Tom Duerr

Support and Protect Allegheny County Workers

Health and Safety for All

Attract Business to District 5 

Protect Our Environment

Improve Quality of Life and

Attract People to District 5

Keep District 5 Affordable

and Maintain or Lower Taxes

Election Security and Modernization

24/7 Constituent Engagement

As a County Councilman, I vow to consistently reach out to my community, and be available 24/7 to listen and answer questions so that I may better serve and represent the people of County Council District 5.  Governance in all forms needs to be active, not passive, and it’s time we have a council member in District 5 who believes and practices that kind of representation.  Without consistent and rigorous constituent outreach, you will not be able to accurately serve the people of your community.  Local governance has a tremendous impact on the day to day lives of those in Allegheny County.  Educating your constituents as to what services you can provide them needs to be of the utmost importance of any candidate or elected official.

Protect Our Environment

Protecting our planet needs to be at the heart of any campaign in 2019.  Whether it’s at a national, state or municipal level, we can no longer continue to ignore the impact we are having on our environment and on the health of the people in our local communities.  Allegheny County has made strides in the past few years regarding its air quality: with 35% of its county buildings being run off of renewable energy, with a plan to increase that to 60% over the next four years. More needs to be done to continue and even accelerate that progress.  I believe we can do even better with the resources we have at our disposal, and as a county councilman I would push to improve that progress even more.  


We need to hold businesses in Allegheny County to a higher standard when it comes to environmental impact.  Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability needs to be the forefront of any new businesses coming into Allegheny County going forward. It does not matter how many economic opportunities we provide if we do not have a planet to enjoy those opportunities in the coming decades – and as a member of county council I will work with our state and federal officials to make sure that we incentivize environmental stewardship and take any necessary steps to hold our local businesses accountable to the people and the environment in which they are a part.  Also, making sure our County Health Department has the resources they need to conduct accurate and in depth inspections of these businesses in a timely manner is another key aspect to improving the air quality here in Allegheny County and holding these businesses accountable. Additionally, although County Council does not have jurisdiction over water quality in Allegheny County, I would look forward to working with our state officials in order to make sure everything was being done to improve and uphold our quality of water.

24/7 Constituent Engagement

As a County Councilman, I vow to consistently reach out to my community, and be available 24/7 to listen and answer questions so that I may better serve and represent the people of County Council District 5.  Governance in all forms needs to be active, not passive, and it’s time we have a council member in District 5 who believes and practices that kind of representation.  Without consistent and rigorous constituent outreach, you will not be able to accurately serve the people of your community.  Local governance has a tremendous impact on the day to day lives of those in Allegheny County.  Educating your constituents as to what services you can provide them needs to be of the utmost importance of any candidate or elected official.

 
 

Health and Safety for All

I am a staunch believer that when you’re elected to represent an area, you’re elected to represent every single constituent in that area to the best of your abilities, regardless of their race, religion or sexual orientation.


Our current county council member does not share this belief, currently standing as one of the harshest critics of LGBTQIA rights on County Council.  Growing up in this district, I still have many LGBTQIA friends who call this their home. To have one of their representatives be so adamantly against fighting for their rights is nothing short of abhorrent. I support the current initiative to ban conversion therapy in Allegheny County and I promise, both as a candidate and elected official, to always fight for LGBTQIA rights here in District 5 and across Allegheny County.

 

Regarding racial justice, I vow to support any policy or initiative that gives everyone a fair shot going through our criminal justice system and being viable contributors to the economic vitality of our County. Counties and municipalities across the Commonwealth are taking a hard look at their Criminal Justice System because it currently wastes taxpayer dollars and disproportionately affects those with black or brown skin. Here in Allegheny County, that means that 35 cents of every tax dollar goes to funding the jail. It’s time that every branch of government, from federal to municipal, enact legislation and create initiatives that work to combat the obvious racial disparities that exist at every level of our criminal justice system and feed the overpopulation in our county jails.

 

Lastly, I believe an important step that County Council can make is to support the creation of a County Civilian Police Review Board, especially in light of the recent tragedy that took place right here in Allegheny County.  This is the direction that Allegheny County is moving and I think our County Council District should have a say in what that looks like for the police serving to protect our municipality.

 

Attract Business to District 5 

Enticing new, well-paying jobs into Southwest PA needs to be a top priority of any campaign being run here in 2019.  At the top of that list should be attracting new, renewable energy jobs.  It not only helps us economically, but also helps our environment by making us less reliable on older, more environmentally harmful forms of energy.  


To me, there are two aspects that we can have a direct hand in that will attract more businesses into Southwest PA; having a well-educated workforce and having a reliable, up to date infrastructure.

 

For the first element, we need to make sure that if these industries choose Allegheny County there will be a well-educated workforce waiting for them.  I would work with other elected officials and regional business leaders to make sure we’re emphasizing training and education programs for people exploring or working to adapt their skills to match the renewable energy industry.  Currently, the County funds one Training Center specifically for renewable energy job training, and as a Councilman I would work to expand program even further. And, as County Council oversees the funding for the Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC), I would make sure that the County Executive and my fellow Council Members were filling CCAC’s board with individuals who would make environmental job training a priority in CCAC’s curriculum.

 

As for the second element, we need to make sure our infrastructure is in the best condition to attract these industries into our community.  Logistics and supply chain management is an imperative aspect to managing any industry. The inability to get products and services from Point A to Point B effectively will be a significant deterrent to companies assessing Allegheny County as potential home for their business. Sustainable, efficient, and affordable infrastructure is paramount for the County’s economic growth/health and quality of life for our people.

 

Improve Quality of Life and

Attract People to District 5

Keep District 5 Affordable

and Maintain or Lower Taxes

The generation I am part of is on pace to earn less than our parents. Here in the South Hills, that’s meant witnessing my peers move out of town to find work in Philadelphia, New Jersey, and Washington D.C.

 

One of the most common things I’ve heard during the past two campaigns I’ve worked on in Southwest PA is how the opportunities afforded to past generations here are not being afforded to our current generations.  We need to take a serious look at why my generation is leaving Southwest PA in droves once they’re finished with college.

 

To buck that trend moving forward, I’d support; local initiatives to invest in infrastructure that attract new industries to do business in Allegheny County, make sure our air / water quality is at or above the national standard, work with our local Community College to make sure they’re offering classes, training, and pathways to many of the new industries entering the region, keeping property taxes down so that we are not taxing my generation and future generations out of living where they grew up and finally, working with PennDOT and the Port Authority to provide reliable and cost effective transportation to everyone in the South Hills; in addition to making sure the 400+ miles of road and the 500+ bridges the County manages are efficiently maintained, improved, and updated.

 

Election Security and Modernization

Voting is the cornerstone to our democracy. Our ability to vote must be protected, honored, and perfected. That’s why I am glad that the Allegheny County Board of Elections is considering for countywide implementation before the 2020 Primary Election.

During my time working on campaigns all throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania, I have experienced the value of having a seamless, effective, and easy way to capture everyone's votes.

Updating our voting machines and emphasizing the security of our elections needs to be a priority for every member of council. It will most certainly be one of mine.

 

Support and Protect Allegheny County Workers

I believe when working families are strong, Southwest Pennsylvania is strong. That's why I will fight day in and day out for worker rights and ensuring that labor always has a seat at the table.

I will work to establish a task force to root out fraud that happens here in Allegheny County and jeopardizes the work of honest and qualified workers. As a member of Council and representative on several committees in that role, I will use my responsibility to ensure contracts are awarded to union workers and businesses. At the county level, I will also have the ability to appoint board members to different parts of our County Government. I will make sure that appointments that I make are grounded in ensuring a seat at the table for members of the labor movement.