Taiwo Idowu: My priorities as a Tyrone Council member

Tyrone Council candidate Taiwo Idowu
Tyrone Council candidate Taiwo Idowu

There are a good number of reasons one might decide to run for elected office. It could be that they feel they alone know what is in the best interest of the people. It could be that a single event exposed the inefficiencies of government. It could simply be that they understand that their civic duty calls for them to be a more active force for the common good.

Whatever the catalyst may be, once we make that decision to put ourselves out there as your potential representatives, we are making a pledge to act on your behalf. For you to make an informed decision on who to carry your voices to the seats of power, you must first know what your candidates will be prioritizing as your representative. With this open letter, I will be informing you of my priorities for Tyrone.

Hi, my name is Taiwo Idowu. It’s pronounced Tie-Woah, which explains the tie on the signs that I hope many of you have seen by now around town. I have spent over a decade in both the consulting world and private sector helping businesses perform at their most efficient level given the constraints of new laws and legislation that may have been passed.

I want to bring that experience to Tyrone, so my first priority is to Increase the business profile of Tyrone. To clarify what I mean by that, there is often a knee-jerk temptation to assume that the best way to make a town more valuable is to bring in the big, nationally established businesses. I have a different way of thinking about this.

I think the best way to attract businesses is to build from within. We must strengthen the local businesses we already have here. Use whatever means we have at our disposal to have them running at their most efficient level.

That means the CARES act; that means the Infrastructure bill; that means creating a business committee that works with the town council in the interest of the people. We will be interpreting federal law and making sure it gets used for local purposes. We must protect the stores and businesses that have called Tyrone their home for years and even decades. 

My second priority is Infrastructure, infrastructure, infrastructure. I said it three times because it is intertwined throughout everything we need in order to tap into our town’s full potential.

Understandably, the term infrastructure makes people think about roads and bridges. However, there is more that I am looking towards when I bring up infrastructure.

Cyber-infrastructure is a key tenet of my vision for a new Tyrone. We need to be bold in ensuring that the town of Tyrone can have effective options when it comes to broadband internet service as a rule rather than the exception.

Eliminating internet dead zones will make our schools, emergency services, businesses and all facets of our daily lives function in a much smoother way. Going back towards a more traditional view of infrastructure, we need to finally get a handle on the long-discussed completion of the multiuse paths.

The interest for getting the golf cart paths completed is certainly there but perhaps it hasn’t had the right push to be prioritized before.

Lastly on infrastructure, a lot of our buildings and structures are based on codes that were enacted for yesterday’s world. If the flooding in the New York City subways or the collapse of the condominium tower in Miami has shown us anything, it’s that we may need to investigate how we can improve our architectural codes to fit our new normal as we start fixing our roads, bridges and other structures.

My third priority is the Efficient use of your tax dollars. This last one is self-explanatory but no less important than the others. We must eliminate line items in our budget that are for services that the people of Tyrone haven’t benefited from in years.

If we have under-utilized or even completely unused real estate, it is past time that we started restructuring the deals we are making as a town for these buildings. Either we repurpose them for vocational learning programs like coding schools for kids and adults or we sell them. It’s your money so I will make sure to spend it as you would.

I hope you feel that the time you took to go over my priorities gave you a clearer sense of the type of councilmember I want to be for the people of Tyrone. I believe that by achieving these wins for our town, we can kickstart the process of putting Tyrone firmly on the map, making it a destination for businesses and families alike.

My family and I are building our lives here and we are as much invested in the success of this town as you are. If you believe in my vision for a new Tyrone, please get out there and vote. Election day is November 2nd, 2021 but early voting begins October 12th, 2021. 

Vote Taiwo for Tyrone. Thank you.

Taiwo Idowu

Tyrone, Ga.