DENVER — There are 17 people on the 2023 ballot for Denver Mayor, all vying to replace Michael Hancock after three terms in office. If that's not the most ever, it's at least the biggest pool of candidates for that office in decades, according to the Denver Clerk and Recorder's Office, which checked their sample paper ballots going back to 1946.
Each candidate has their own ideas regarding crime, homelessness, housing affordability and more. We asked all of them the same policy questions and asked for written responses.
Below you'll find Renate Behrens' answers, all unedited and in the candidate's own words, as well as documents related to policy proposals.
You can see the other candidates' responses here.
Denver's Election Day is April 4.
Renate Behrens has worked as a secretary, chef and stewardess. Behrens is originally from Germany. She said she came to Colorado "for love," but her eventual path to homelessness is part of the reason she wants to become mayor. This is her first run for public office.
Political affiliation: None
In a single sentence, why are you running for mayor?
My country did not do anything for me, so I will do something for my country, for Denver, and I need a job, this job!
Please provide specifics on your plan to improve public safety and reduce crime in Denver. Specifically, please note whether the Denver Police budget should be increased or decreased (including funding diversion to non-police emergency responses).
Increase the budget, much better selection (background etc.) and education of police men every life matters, human rights, human life is holy.
What should the City of Denver do to promote affordable housing?
Turn old brick buildings, factories, office buildings into apartments. employers ... should be obliged to provide housing for employees, and the City of Denver, too. build affordable houses with the self help of the renters/owners.
How should Denver change its approach to addressing homelessness?
Change zoning: add mother in law suites to single family houses. change divorce laws: nobody should be homeless because of divorce. Employers provide housing! Do not look down at homeless people, do not look for mental issues as causes. It is our, the society's fault, the inhuman capitalistic conditions, that people are homeless. Do not talk about homelessness.., if you were not homeless. Housing is a basic human right.
How should Denver change its approach to mobility and safe streets?
Free public transportation -- electric vehicles only! - for everybody, improved public transportation, so every commuter can have a relaxed rid to their job and work more efficiently. Parking lots of the commuters should be turned into gardens/parks. Safe streets? We are the greatest pothole country. We should learn how to build roads properly (prefer natural material that we have in abundance) or hire experts from abroad. Reduce speed limits. Slow down streets with flower beds... Let the vehicles drive slalom, so they prefer to avoid the city next time. Safe streets? Neighborhood watches, patrols.
The Mayor has significant control over a $3-4 billion budget and will hire cabinet members who oversee roughly 12,000 employees. Please detail your experience with budgets and hiring.
Should the City of Denver explore ways to exert more control over Denver Public Schools? If so, how would you do that and what would be your goal?
Yes, the level of education is not good enough for all of the problems of mankind.
Please assess the Hancock administration’s response to the influx of migrants from the southern border since December 2022. What should Denver do to prepare for and respond to another potential influx of migrants?
They did a lot. Not everything desirable can/could be done.
What should Denver do to prevent the displacement of longtime residents due to gentrification and tax burdens?
Do not let the developers do the planning. Denver is able to lighten the tax burdens in order to save the residents from displacements, losing their roots.
What should be done to revitalize downtown Denver (vis-à-vis office occupancy, the 16th Street Mall, crime)?
Turn office space into (affordable, too0 apartments, keep the TRAFFIC out! LET THE KIDS PLAY IN THE STREETS, AND LET US DANCE IN THE STREETS.
What is within the power of the City of Denver to fight the opioid epidemic? What steps should regional or state leaders take in cooperation to reduce fentanyl deaths?
Education about drugs mandatory to kids and parents.
Xcel Energy's franchise agreement expires on Dec. 31, 2026. What will you seek from the next agreement that protects Denver customers from high utility bills?
Affordable utilities are a basic human right. If there is no agreement regarding this point, nationalize Xcel. A little socialism is good for our country.
Denver has a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 65% by 2030. A sales tax approved by voters funds the city's climate action goals. What, if any, changes would you make to Denver's climate action goals and how would you make green energy and environmentally sustainable living available across income levels?
Ban cars with combustion engines. Do the govt. buildings have solar panels on the roofs, they should. Environmentally sustainable living is not possible in Denver, too late.
Yes or No
Will you enforce Denver’s camping ban?
Should Denver maintain its effective status as a sanctuary city through noncooperation with immigration agents?
Will you vote to support development of the Park Hill Golf Course as currently proposed on the April ballot?
Do you support the use of any Denver taxpayer funds to build a new football stadium for the Broncos?
Should Denver reduce vehicle volumes downtown?
Did you support Mayor Michael Hancock’s re-election in 2019?
If the Colorado legislature lifts the ban on local rent control, should Denver pursue some form of rent control?
Should Denver pursue the creation of a supervised drug injection site with the permission of the state legislature?
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