Dan Martin wants Springfield to be a place where his children decide to stay and be successful. He doesn’t just want to reverse the population loss — he wants to see Springfield thrive.
“There’s definitely a place for us in the market as a medium-sized city where people want to live,” he said. “We have the advantages of a big town without the traffic or expensive real estate of a big city.”
The Springfield attorney who previously worked for the Ohio Attorney General’s Office is seeking a sixth term on the city commission. He’s served on the five-person commission for the past 20 years.
“I’ve been on commission for awhile,” Martin said. “But I think I can continue to contribute new ideas but also have that institutional knowledge of having been on the commission in the past.”
The biggest issue facing Springfield is the opioid crisis, he said. Although it’s a national issue, he said it affects so many people and some of the things Springfield is trying to do as a community.
“It’s hard to move forward on good neighborhoods, good jobs and education when unfortunately there’s a large number of citizens who have been afflicted by this,” Martin said.
The community must continue its collaboration efforts to encourage treatment instead of incarceration for users, he said. The city must also take a hard line on drug traffickers, who are sometimes released early from state prisons to address overcrowding, he said.
“We need to start treating people who are dispensing (fentanyl) as more than just your typical drug dealer,” Martin said. “This is someone who is potentially murdering people with what they’re selling.”
Springfield must take a multi-faceted approach to bringing jobs, including working with partners, offering strategic tax incentives in the downtown and providing infrastructure for industrial parks, he said.
Martin wouldn’t support adding sexual orientation to the city’s non-discrimination ordinance, he said. There’s still a great deal of flux in defining the parameters for what those protections would be, Martin said.
“There are legitimate religious liberty issues that need to be resolved,” he said. “It’s hard to do an ordinance when there’s a lot of grey areas as far as how those would interact. I think the federal legislature and the federal courts are going to need to be the ones who define that for us.”
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Martin also isn’t in favor of resuming the city’s red light camera program.
He wouldn’t support going back on the ballot to renew the recently passed .4-percent temporary income tax, Martin said. He supported the temporary tax as a stop gap measure, he said. The city must make cuts and find areas to consolidate with other government entities to get back to a 2 percent income tax, he said.
“It’s my goal to be able to go back and say we don’t need that anymore,” Martin said.
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Education: Catholic Central High School, Wittenberg University, University of Dayton School of Law
Employment: Dan Martin, attorney at solo practice firm after working at the Ohio Attorney General’s Office
Previous elected positions: Five terms on the Springfield City Commission, 1998-current
Website: Re-elect Dan Martin, City Commissioner on Facebook.com