WKAR’s conversations with Lansing city council candidates continue today with Peter Spadafore, who’s running for an at-large seat.
Spadafore is on the Lansing Board of Education and is a past president of the board. He represents 550 Michigan school districts to state lawmakers as the executive director of government relations for the Michigan Association of School Administrators.
Spadafore says that while he lives in the 4th ward, he chose to run at-large rather than against ward incumbent Jessica Yorko. "At-large fits with my vision for governance in the city," he explains. "Ward issues are important, but I also think you need someone to focus on the city at large. As a school district member, as president of the school board for three years, my focus was on the entire city."
Along with education issues, Spadafore thinks the city's infrastructure need attention. "We need to talk about how our roads need to be part of a strategic, long term improvement, not just haphazard patchings of Michigan Avenue because people got loud about it," he says. Spadafore continues, "I drive through the neighborhoods and other areas that are not downtown, and see roads that are damaging vehicles. They're dangerous. Sidewalks are the same way."
As for the Lansing economy, Spadafore again says there needs to be a city-wide focus, not just on the blocks around the state capitol, but to make Lansing what he calls "a place that attracts job providers in all areas so that people want to live here."