A very Denverite mayoral questionnaire: Andy Rougeout

We asked candidates about the Park Hill Golf Course conservation land easement, Denver’s future, sweeps and more.
5 min. read
Andy Rougeout speaks during a mayoral debate at Regis University. Feb. 9, 2023.
Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite

As part of our 2023 voter guide, we asked each mayoral candidate on the ballot to fill out a questionnaire. You can read short biographies of each candidate and find their questionnaires here.

Please answer the following questions with a yes or no.

Should the conservation land easement on Park Hill Golf Course be lifted? Yes

Assume the police force is fully staffed, should Denver hire more police officers? Yes

On that note, would reducing the police budget to fund diversion programs and other potentially crime reducing initiatives ever be an option for your administration? No

Should Denver plow streets after snow storms more often even if it means over budgeting for it? Yes

There's a bill at the legislature that would allow a version of local rent control. If it became law, should Denver enact rent control measures? No

Should Denver institute mandatory holds on people interacting with law enforcement who are in mental health or addiction crises? Yes

If state law allowed them, should Denver have supervised drug use sites? No

Is the mayor's office too powerful? No

Does Denver need more bike lanes? No

Does Denver need more parking lots? No

Feel free to elaborate on these questions.

What are the biggest threats Denver faces in the next 30 years, and what will you do about them given that you could be mayor for 12 years? 

Rising crime is an issue that, if not solved immediately, will impact the long term future of Denver. As Mayor, I will add four hundred police officers, increase funding for police training, and ensure our 911 system is responsive to crack down on crime in our city and fight for our future.

What do you admire about Mayor Michael Hancock's administration? What would you improve on?

Mayor Hancock has effectively promoted DIA as a national and international hub. However, overall, his administration has failed our city. Crime, homelessness, and the cost of housing has skyrocketed under Mayor Hancock. As Mayor I will fight for Denver's future by using my experience as an Army officer, small business owner, and father to reduce crime, homelessness, and the cost of housing in our city.

What steps would your administration take to make Denver more affordable?

Denver is not affordable for blue collar workers, young families, and first-time home buyers. As Mayor, I will fight for Denver's future by eliminating regulations that increase the cost of building affordable housing and by fixing our broken permitting department to make Denver more affordable.

Sweeps or no sweeps? You can add some nuance here, but you must answer "I would continue the sweeps" or "I would end the sweeps."

I will consistently enforce the camping ban to get the homeless into the mental health and drug addiction services they need. I will not support safe injection sites in our neighborhoods and believe the universal basic income program for the homeless is counterproductive.

Permitting wait times in Denver have increased significantly, sometimes slowing down how fast housing can be built. What do you think is the problem and how would you fix that?

Denver deserves a functioning permitting department. As Mayor, I'll increase the affordability of housing in our city and fight for our future by fixing our failing permitting department. I'll require workers to return to full time in person work and change a departmental culture from one afraid to make decisions to a culture focused on building more housing.

What are your thoughts on converting downtown empty office spaces into residences? 

Unless downtown is safe, it will continue to suffer regardless of the mix of office space and residences. As Mayor, I'll fight for the future of downtown Denver by adding four hundred police officers, increasing funding for officer training, and enforcing our camping ban to get the homeless into the mental health and drug addiction services they need.

Black-owned businesses like Coffee at the Point and Wah Gwaan Brewing Company have been shutting down. Should the city intervene to preserve Black entrepreneurship, and if so, how? 

Denver should promote Black entrepreneurship in our city. One way Denver can help is by eliminating self imposed barriers to business formation and accessing capital, for example by streamlining the process for registering as a minority owned business.

How do you feel about land acknowledgements?

Denver is a diverse, vibrant city. We should highlight and acknowledge our city's history.

What are your thoughts on a flavored tobacco ban? 

I am against it

Describe specifically how your office will demonstrate transparency?

As Mayor, I'll bring my experience as an Army officer, small business owner, and father to ensure my administration is accountable and transparent to the people of Denver

When's the last time you rode RTD?

I frequently take the A line

Vision Zero, Denver's initiative to eliminate traffic deaths, could be going better. What would you do to improve that?

As Mayor, I'll combat the alarming rise in traffic and pedestrian deaths by adding four hundred police officers and increasing funding for police training. The current administration's failure to properly staff our police force and failure to enforce our laws, on running red lights and driving drunk, is making our city less safe.

The EPA has declared Denver a "severe" violator of federal ozone standards. What actions would you take to reduce ozone precursor emissions within the city?

I'll fight for Denver's future by ensuring Denver is a hub for clean energy entrepreneurship, which can provide a long-term solution to curbing our emissions.

What's the worst intersection in Denver?

Merging onto I-25 North from Kalamath Street. The merge lane is way too short when traffic is moving.

Need more help voting? Check out the rest of our voter guide here.

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