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Gun violence, affordable housing dominant issues in heated mayoral forum

Arlo Barnette

Public safety and affordable housing were among the top issues up for debate last night between the two candidates for Lexington Mayor. WUKY’s Arlo Barnette has this recap.

Here in its entirety is the mayoral portion of the candidates forum

Incumbent Mayor Linda Gorton and 6th District Councilman David Kloiber took questions before hundreds of Lexington residents at Lyric Theatre. Withless than two months before the November 8th election, one of the hottest points of contention was around public safety, in light of a recent spate of shootings in the city. Gorton touted measures she has taken to make policing more transparent, along with her appointment of Devine Carama to ONE Lexington, which facilitates youth outreach. Kloiber advocated for a strategy called Group Violence Intervention, or GVI, which he says has been proven to help reduce and prevent violence.

Gorton rebutted the GVI approach, saying she’s called many cities for whom it hasn’t contributed to violence reduction. She also cited cases that have been helped by the FLOCK cameras Kloiber mentioned, which the police have been using on a trial basis to read license plates on public roads.

On the issue of affordable housing, Kloiber pointed out that more than half of the people who work in Lexington cannot afford to live in the city. Gorton acknowleged work needs to be done but said the city has helped to create about 3,000 new housing units during her tenure.

The forum was co-sponsored by WUKY and also included debate between candidates vying for one of the three Council-At-Large seats.