Candidates Abu Bakkar Ngila Jalloh, Clifford Martin and Dan Merkel are running for Alpharetta city council post 6.
Biomedical scientist Abu Bakkar Ngila Jalloh moved to Alpharetta in 2010. Jalloh said he has held multiple leadership roles throughout his life, including Student Government Association president at Hillsborough Community College and graduated from University of South Florida with double major biomedical science and public health.
Jalloh said his top priorities are fixing the high taxes, traffic and balancing out the housing prices with income. Jalloh said that in the ten years he has lived in Alpharetta, he has watched the traffic and taxes worsen.
“A lot of the folks who lived in Alpharetta for generations are moving out because they cannot afford the taxes, so I think something needs to be done,” Jalloh said. “For higher taxes to chase them out of their highers, it’s not fair.”
According to Jalloh, Alpharetta’s growth does not match the infrastructure in place. Jalloh said he wants to develop a plan to figure out how to fund and fix the city’s roads. He also said he wants to give “small businesses a fair chance.” Jalloh also said the fire and police departments need to be fully staffed and funded.
Occupation: Biomedical Scientist
Years Living in City: 9 years in Alpharetta
Relevant Experience- Student Government Association president at University of South Florida
Facebook: Abu Bakkar Ngila Jalloh
Retired chief information officer Clifford Martin has lived in the city for more than 30 years. Martin, 64, has more than 40 years experience as a senior business executive, eight years as an HOA president and currently serves on the Alpharetta City Ethics Board.
Martin said his top three priorities includes developing a plan to alleviate as much traffic as possible, ensuring Alpharetta is not over-developed and reforming local campaign finance and stronger ethics compliance, especially for conflicts of interest.
“Fixing the problem isn’t something that Alpharetta can do alone,” Martin said. “We need a unified plan with the adjoining cities (Milton, Johns Creek, Roswell) and counties, state transportation departments, local public mass transit, and in conjunction with the area’s large employers to develop a transportation master plan and implement it.”
Age: 64 Occupation: Retired Chief Information Officer Years in Living in the city: 30+ Moved into current home in 1989 Relevant Experience: I am a retired senior business executive with over 40 years’ experience in dealing with multi-million dollar projects, negotiating contracts, doing long term planning and both setting and meeting measurement metrics. In the past I have served as a homeowner’s association president for eight years. For the past year I have served on the Alpharetta City Ethics Board. Website: votecliffordmartin.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/VoteCliffordMartin Twitter: @bigreddogatl
Fifty-four-year-old incumbent Dan Merkel is running for re-election for post 6. The independent insurance agent has lived in Alpharetta for 25 years. Among other positions, Merkel has served as chairman of the Board Alpharetta Chamber of Commerce, past Chairman of the Alpharetta Public Safety Foundation and Past President of the Alpharetta Rotary Club.
During his time in office so far, Merkel said he is most proud of how they have handled Alpharetta tax dollars.
“In my first term, we were able to pass a comprehensive transportation and greenspace bond and also passed a measure which increases the homestead exemption for residents and seniors,” Merkel said.
Merkel said his top three priorities include implementing the $80 million “in road projects from the recently approved TSPLOST and transportation bond as quickly as possible,” revitalizing North Point Mall and completing new parks and connecting the city’s greenway system to Forsyth County.
Occupation: Independent Insurance Agent
Years Living in City: 25 years living in Alpharetta
Relevant Experience- First Term City Councilman, Past Chairman of the Board Alpharetta Chamber of Commerce, Past Chairman of the Board Ed Isakson Alpharetta YMCA, Past Chairman of the Alpharetta Public Safety Foundation, Past President of the Alpharetta Rotary Club
Early voting began Oct. 15, with Election Day falling on Nov. 5.