Ryan Gene Fulkerson

Political party: 
Nonpartisan
Question 1: 

What is your vision for how you will represent Bowling Green? How will Bowling Green be different in two years if you’re elected?

I wish to engage with all residents of Bowling Green. I feel that there is a disconnect between the voters and our local city officials and I am seeking to get average citizens who have not been engaged involved in local politics. I am also running a campaign that is issue oriented rather than personality driven. I will work very hard to pass a fairness ordinance, the landlord tenant act URLTA, a minimum wage increase, increase diversity in city employment, and to work to make downtown Bowling Green a central business and entertainment district. Together these policies and vision for Bowling Green will transform our city.

Question 2: 

Given the changing housing landscape and that the majority of the Bowling Green population are renters, would you support the enactment of URLTA, a law that would provide greater protections for landlords and tenants?

I do support URLTA and have included adoption of URLTA as a central plank of my platform. As a community we have many renters who should be protected from unfair provisions that may be included in leases, similarly the majority of landlords should not be forced to compete with the few landlords who are engaging in unscrupulous business practices.

Question 3: 

A fairness ordinance simply adds sexual orientation and gender identity to the city's civil rights ordinance. Would you vote to adopt such an ordinance to protect our LGBT community from discrimination?

I would absolutely vote to adopt a fairness ordinance. I have spoken at a city commission meeting in support of the fairness ordinance, attended meetings of the BG Fairness Campaign, and if I am elected I will immediately seek to pass a fairness ordinance. I believe Bowling Green as a whole is a welcoming community and our laws should reflect this. Everyone in Bowling Green should be protected from discrimination whether it is based on race, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

Question 4: 

Last year the city commissions of Louisville and Lexington voted to increase the minimum wage. Would you support a minimum wage increase in Bowling Green?

Yes, I do support raising the minimum wage to a living wage and have included a minimum wage increase in my platform. I have proposed to increase the minimum wage in Bowling Green to $10.10 which is slightly above the $9.80 living wage in Bowling Green as calculated by MIT and would put us on par with Lexington and Louisville. I believe everyone who works a full time job should be able to at the least meet their basic needs and a local minimum wage increase would go a long way in making this goal a reality.

Question 5: 

What would you do to address racial inequality in Bowling Green?

I believe we first have to recognize that Bowling Green is not immune from racial inequality and seek to be proactive in addressing issues of racial inequality. One measure I have endorsed is seeking to increase diversity in city employment whether is be the police force, fire department, schools, or other city agencies. I also believe we must be proactive in working to prevent police brutality and support the use of body cameras and civilian review boards to ensure that allegations of police brutality are investigated independently and thoroughly.

Question 6: 

What role can the local government play in helping bridge the gap between local farmers and consumers, especially schools, restaurants, and industrial buyers? What ideas and policies do you support to strengthen our local food economy?

Local government can encourage the use of public lands for community gardens and farmer's markets. City government can highlight our local farmers and restaurants that use local produce. City government can give priority for all city events for locally grown produce and local food.

Question 7: 

Other Kentucky cities have opened Offices of Sustainability to provide education and community action in urban farming and gardening. What steps can the city of Bowling Green take to scale up emerging community garden endeavors?

Bowling Green can ensure that local ordinances and zoning laws encourage rather than impede community gardening. City government can also encourage city agencies such as the housing authority, city schools, and parks to be involved and partner in community farming and gardening efforts.