Alton, IL – Two major Alton unions are helping David Goins, a challenger in the April election to incumbent mayor Brandt Walker.
A retired police sergeant, who served 25 years with the Alton Police Department, Goins is a lifelong resident of Alton. He is a member of the Alton School Board, previously served on the city’s Civil Service Commission, and has served for 19 years as pastor of the Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church.
He has been endorsed by Teamsters Local 525 and Laborers Local 218.
Kyle Bollinger, president of Local 525, which serves six counties surrounding the Alton area, said the union believes Goins is the one to rebuild the local economy.
“We support David’s vision for rebuilding the Alton community, including economic development which corresponds to new businesses and jobs,” he said, also lauding Goins’ high ethical standards and integrity.
“David Goins possesses the right temperament to be an outstanding mayor for the city of Alton, and we believe that he will operate with transparency and hold himself and his administration accountable to the Alton taxpayers.”
Robert McDonald, business manager of Local 218, said his local has been disappointed with Mayor Walker, who was first elected in 2012.
“Brandt Walker is unresponsive to the city’s public workers, their families and taxpayers,” he said. “He is more committed to encouraging out-of-state companies to bring in workers and take jobs from the men and women who are trying to provide for their families.”
Goins, McDonald said, has shown he can operate with transparency and integrity.
“David Goins will partner with our local trades and businesses to find solutions and bring a new vision for rebuilding the Alton community for our hard-working families,” he said.
Goins says his goal is to restore Alton to being a “safe, clean and vibrant city.
“Through my ministry as a pastor and experience as a police officer, I have seen firsthand the challenges our community faces,” he said.
“Since 2012 under the current leadership, Alton has experienced continued job losses and a faltering economy, unlike some of our neighboring communities.”
‘ALTON CAN FLOURISH AND GROW’
From its peak of 43,047 in 1960, Alton’s population has steadily declined to 26,500, endangering its home-rule status for authority to self-govern on sales taxes and local issues. Financial liabilities are up and the tax base is down, Goins said.
“But with new leadership, and a new vision for growth, Alton can flourish, grow and reach its full potential,” Goins said. “Our businesses and families deserve to experience a strong economy with positive employment opportunities, safe neighborhoods, and quality schools, resulting in stability for our city and its citizens.
“I promise to lead with integrity, honesty and respect. My actions will follow my words, and I will keep my campaign promises,” he said. “I will make it a priority to develop a professional, honest and respectful working relationship with local Labor and trade organizations and I will not support further outsourcing of jobs.
“I will create a community engagement committee that focuses on public safety, crime prevention and strategies to promote community pride and trust,” he said. “And supporting our public and private schools will be a cornerstone of my administration.”
PARTNERING WITH LABOR
Goins said he would “partner with Labor to find solutions to our workforce issues,” and also work with realtors, developers and contractors on housing issues. and with public and private school leaders.
He said that in his first 45 days as mayor, he will begin hiring a professional team to develop a strategic plan to tackle the city’s most pressing issues. He said he also plans to develop a beautification infrastructure program to repair and maintain streets and sidewalks.
He also promised to get a handle on the COVID-19 pandemic in the city. “My priority as Alton mayor will be to get my hands around this terrible pandemic by partnering with the Madison County Health Department and other health providers to lead an aggressive and comprehensive education and accessible vaccine campaign to get shots into the arms of every Alton citizen, especially for our seniors, elderly and underserved citizens.”
He and his wife, Sheila, have three children and 11 grandchildren. For more information on his campaign, go online to www.facebook.com/DavidGoinsforMayor.