Bill Tatum

by Yes Weekly Election Coverage

Residential address: 1930 Bedford St., 27107

Incumbent or challenger? Challenger

Age: 64

Campaign website or blog: None

Occupation and employer: Retired code enforcementinspector, city of Winston-Salem

Previous elective experience(including election campaigns): Candidate for Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board,1984

Endorsement: NC Police Benevolent Association

Civic and volunteerexperience (including service on local government commissions and boards): Downtown Health PlazaAdvisory Board; retired, US Army Reserve; former president, Winston-Salem Branch NAACP; Winston-Salem Zoning Board ofAdjustment; board of directors, Rural Initiative Preservation Inc. (past); boardof directors, East Winston Community Development Corp. (past)

Education (highest degreeattained and name of institution): BS in business administration, High Point College

Party registration: Democrat

Where were you born? High Point

What year did you move to Winston-Salem?1950(lifelong Winston-Salem resident)

Paid consultants working oncampaign: None

Campaign manager: None

Treasurer: Kenny Faulkner

Articles about thiscandidate:

• Two homegrown Democrats vie for Southeast Ward seat (link)’ 

• Tatum’s entry in Southeast Ward race sets up Democratic primary (link)’ 

The majority of Winston-Salem City Council declined tointervene in Kalvin Michael Smith’s federal petition for a new trial althoughcitizens have requested that the city take responsibility for a flawed policeinvestigation that arguably undermined the judicial process leading to Smith’sconviction in the brutal beating of Jill Marker. What is your position on thismatter?

I amtaken back by a council member that did not call for a federal investigationpetition on Kalvin Michael Smith’s case. They declined to intervene as a councilshows me that they were more concerned with the liability of the city and Winston-SalemPolice Department, and not with the real justice of a citizen. I call this no gutsby a council member. Many of the council members have not been involved intoserious cases of injustices against African-American men. The Civil Rights Actis always under attack by the judicial system. Mr. Smith deserved a new trial.If I was (or am) a council member I would hope we could push for the case to bemove forward; although, a judge recently ruled against a new trial.

Do you support the proposed Urban Circulator (streetcar orenhanced bus) that would connect Baptist Hospital and East Winston throughdowntown? Please explain why or why not.

Yes,I support the Urban Circulator bus service. However I feel that the two medicalhospitals should been a good business partner with the city and help fund theproject. The two medical hospitals have employees that can’t afford to pay forother expensive modes of transportation.

City council has focused on revitalizing downtown over thepast 10 years, most recently approving the first entertainment district in thecity. Should the city continue to promote intensification of shared commercialand residential uses in downtown or slow growth to protect existing businessesand homeowners?

YesI feel that businesses and resident should share in some of the expense, butnot to the magnitude that it burdened them. A small fee should be charged ornothing at all. I feel the city should fund most of the expense for thedistrict. I do believe we should slow down the growth of residentialdevelopment in center city.

While downtown is vibrant and beautiful, areas to theimmediate north and east are uninviting, underdeveloped and lacking inpedestrian-scale retail amenities. What, if anything, should be done to extendthe vitality of downtown into outlying areas?

Ifeel we need to look at the WSSU Master Plan to revitalize the area around the eastalong ML King Jr. Drive. Try to bring upscale outlet malls around the north andeast. Install neon light signs that tell about city of Winston-Salem. We needto create more business park development in these areas.

What role should city council play in the Business 40improvement project, including recommendations for traffic alignment throughdowntown when the project is completed?

Thecity council should support the DOT plan. Create better alignment for trafficentrance and outlets for downtown. Post visible traffic signs for thedirectional flow of traffic downtown.

What is your position on the use of incentives to promoteeconomic development? If you support incentives, why? If not, what other toolsdoes city government have for promoting job growth?

Iam a firm believer that we need to take a new look at the incentives plan. Weneed to improve our negotiation with business about jobs. Insert a stiffer penaltyfor not honoring their incentive agreement to municipality. Ensure that thenumber of jobs in the company go earlier to the citizen of the city/county in ashorter period of time…not run over the length of the incentive agreement.

What is your proudest achievement?

Servingas the former president of Winston Salem Branch NAACP and completing LeadershipWinston Salem Class of 1992. My accomplishment in negotiating and boycotting theAdam Mark Hotel for custodian to have better working conditions; being a partof the Baptist Hospital and the Reynolds Health Center transition from the ForsythCounty government; revising the Winston-Salem Police Department pepper spray(OC) policy to be used on citizen when making an arrest; and the filing of complaintto the Office of Civil Rights (Title 10) monitoring the Winston Salem/ForsythCounty Board of Education racial balance of schools. The superintendant wastrying to create one-race school system. These were my greatest accomplishments,working for citizens that did not have a voice and getting positive results.

What’s your favorite way to unwind in Winston-Salem?

Goinghome praying that I have helped someone accomplish a task in life. I also enjoyall sports for relaxation.