District 5: Unopposed Mitchell pulls in 147 votes

Although Laura Mitchell ran unopposed in District 5, she, like Mayor-elect Jake Day, ran a campaign, attended candidates’ forums and gave thoughtful answers.

“I am very focused on our kids,” Mitchell said, calling for community centers and places where they can participate in activities while involving their families.

On Election Day, she was at the polls talking to constituents, many who told her they like the new district voting system because it’s simpler. A voter only has to decide who to choose for mayor and City Council member representing his district, instead of voting for all council members.

She received 147 votes. A total of 1,444 people voted in all five districts, and for mayor, representing 10.73 percent of registered voters, according to  information provided by the board of elections.

The 50-year-old Mitchell, an incumbent, said she wants to see the city “fill its own dance card” by marketing and recruiting companies that want to expand into Salisbury.

More jobs are needed in Salisbury, Mitchell said, but she doesn’t believe it’s the government’s job to create them. Instead, the government should create the environment for jobs, said.

That can be done with a little ingenuity, maybe scavenger hunts for college students, since so many are unaware there is a downtown, with shops and restaurants, as well as community events such as 3rd Friday.

Like all the candidates, she talked about being concerned about the crime rate, which, admittedly is down. Even so, Mitchell said, “There are a lot of petty crimes going on and juveniles and drugs are problems.”

She has been working with Police Chief Barbara Duncan, studying  addiction programs that have been successful nationwide. She said she is monitoring their successes, and how they can be used locally.

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