Q&A: District 4 Candidate Roxy Ndebumadu on the environment and development
Bowie City Council Candidate: Roxy Ndebubmadu
Occupation: Technology Startup CEO
Education: BS, Howard University
Years lived in Bowie: 25
Current or previous elected office, if any:
Bowie Mayor Pro Tem and District 4 City Council Member
Which seat are you running for on the Bowie City Council? District 4
Endorsements from environmental leaders, if any: N/A
What is your stance on accepting donations from developers? Have you received developer campaign donations for this or previous campaigns?
I have not taken any donations from developers.
What are your plans, if any, to address concerns about overdevelopment in the Bowie area?
There is a saying “If you’re not at the table, then you're on the menu.” For far too long, Bowie has been on the menu. One of the challenges to the city is the lack of zoning authority to fully influence or freeze the types of development that occurs in the city. My goal is to reduce the burden on the county and gain a much more influential seat at the table through shared permitting authority. Shared permitting authority will give the city a direct voice in the important conversations around development. We can shape the community we want but it will take a willingness to do something different, and I am committed to addressing the unique challenges of development in the city.
Do you believe climate change is real and if so, what climate change issues, if any, are you planning to tackle while on the Bowie City Council?
It's a scientific fact that our climate is changing. My heart is in public health and technology. Many people ignore the public health impacts of climate change. Rising temperatures can increase the occurrence of heat-related illnesses and affect air quality, leading to respiratory problems. Vector-borne diseases may also become more prevalent. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions can help slow down the rate of temperature rise and mitigate the effects of climate change.
After reading the Bowie Climate Action Plan, how would you work to implement it if elected?
Thanks to the wonderful work of our neighbors and community partners we have the implementation plan to accompany the climate action plan. We should find ways to expedite the execution of the action items in the implementation plan.
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
If elected, how will you ensure that funds are allocated to the city’s environmental initiatives?
A full audit and analysis of the cost to fully implement the Climate Action Plan should be done. The funding allocation should be done by funding the priorities that will have the largest impact on the city's climate goals and objectives without risking a reduction in other city priorities.
With the rise of inflation, what are your long-term plans to reduce home energy costs?
Over the long term we should look for ways to leverage technology to reduce home energy cost, embracing clean energy and reducing the reliance on BGE which typically causes disruption to residents. One way to do that would be to invest in smart home technology to automate energy use. You can remotely control lighting, heating, and cooling systems to optimize energy efficiency. It may be possible to offer rebates to residents to promote home energy efficiency.
What role, if any, do schools, businesses and homeowners play in protecting the environment locally?
Everyone has a role to play in protecting our environment. We can promote opportunities at every level to curb climate change. Everyone can recycle (but we have to teach residents what helpful composting looks like). Everyone can reduce energy consumption. The small steps to reduce greenhouse gasses can go a long way if everyone can agree and get on board with saving our planet. We started that work when I led and passed the Smart Cities and Dig Once initiative, which is now being looked at by the county through the OCIO's office.