Woodson wants Fibrant to turn profit, city to build central office


SALISBURY — Paul Woodson isn’t just running for a ninth term on Salisbury City Council, he’s running for a second term as mayor.

Woodson makes no secret of the fact that he’d like to repeat as top vote getter this year and continue to serve as mayor.

Woodson said during his two years as mayor, the city’s fund balance increased by 50 percent and Salisbury become more business friendly, especially with the opening of the One Stop Shop for development. City Council held the line on the budget, Woodson said, with no tax increase this year.

“We are streamlined and more efficient,” said Woodson, 67.

He said department heads now must justify large expenditures.

The owner of Vogue Cleaners, Woodson said if re-elected, he would work to make Fibrant profitable and build the proposed Rowan-Salisbury School System central office downtown.

Fibrant is expected to break even this year and not borrow money from other city funds. Woodson said within two years, he wants the high-speed broadband utility to make enough money to cover all expenses, continue to repay loans from the water-sewer capital reserve and have money left over.

Fibrant should help the city recruit high-tech businesses while stabilizing the tax rate by providing a source of revenue, he said.

Woodson said he supports constructing an office building on South Main Street even if the school system’s plan to lease it from the city is derailed. The proposed building, Integro’s $3.2 million headquarters and the Empire Hotel when redeveloped would transform the south end of downtown, Woodson said.

“Even if it’s not a school building, it’s worth doing,” he said. “It will spur growth for Salisbury.”

Woodson earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed one year of post-undergraduate school. He serves on the Economic Development Commission, RCCC Foundation, Firemen’s Relief Fund, Salisbury Tourism Development Authority, Centralina Council of Governments and Margaret C. Woodson Foundation.

Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.

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