Name: Celestine Mills
Family: I have been blessed with a son and two beautiful grandchildren
Occupation: Prosthetic Coordinator
Political/Government Experience: I have no previous experience as an elected official; therefore, I am not a “recycled” politician as are others across the political spectrum. What I am is the most qualified, most dedicated, and the most knowledgeable of the needs of the citizens of District Ten.
Years lived in Jacksonville: I was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida.
Campaign website: www.voteforcelestinemills.com
Why did you decide to run for office? After becoming dissatisfied with quality of representation afforded to the citizens of District Ten in 2014, rather than complain, I decided to run for the office. Of course, I was unsuccessful in usurping the incumbent. For the next four years, I have attended City Council meetings, researched legislation, studied policy decisions, and interfaced with as many District Ten residents as I possibly could.
What is the biggest problem facing Jacksonville as a city overall, and how specifically would seek to address that: The major issues facing Jacksonville as a city overall, and not necessarily in the order presented:
(1) Affordable Housing,
(2) Healthcare Disparities,
(3) Income Inequality,
4) Violent Crime,
(5) Economic Development,
(6) Infrastructure issues, and
(7) Funding for Schools including Teacher Salaries.
What makes your constituents unique, and how would that influence your time in office: If elected to the Jacksonville City Council, I would represent the citizens of District Ten to very best of my ability seeking advice and counsel from every resource at my availability. In terms of making tough decisions, I cannot comprehend anything that the majority of my constituents want that would not be in the best interest of the city.
What would be your main budget priority for the upcoming fiscal year: I haven’t reviewed the city’s budget for FY19; however, I do not support deficit spending. I believe the City should live within its annual budget. I would support an increase in property taxes to give better support to public school resources and teacher salaries. I would only support local sales tax increases for infrastructure projects.
How do you define what you hope Jacksonville will be ten years from now: My hope is that Jacksonville would effectively reduce its unacceptable violent crime rate, actually in less time than ten years. Also, within the next ten years that a massive infrastructure program will ensue coupled with sound policy initiatives to address climate change from both an environmental and economic standpoint. Indeed, my hope is that Jacksonville will deal effectively with healthcare disparities, affordable housing disparities, and become reflective of the slogans that are casually tossed around (i.e., One Jacksonville, Bold City, etc,).
EDITOR’S NOTE: WOKV asked all candidates in a race to answer the same questions, and the answers here are their unedited responses. WOKV has not independently verified information in these answers, nor is WOKV endorsing any candidates.