Nov. 3 2015 06:56 AM

City Pulse endorsements for Lansing and East Lansing

(This story has been corrected to remove a statement regarding Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero's endorsement of Emily Dievendorf. Bernero supports her. Because of wrong information provided, the original story said otherwise.)

TUESDAY, Nov. 3 — Voters decide today on local candidates and ballot issues, including in Lansing and East Lansing. Here are City Pulse's recommendations in those two communities.

In Lansing, we endorse Jody Washington, Adam Hussain and Emily Dievendorf.

Washington, who is serving her first term representing the 1st Ward on the east side, has grown in the job, leaders in her ward say. She deserves a second term.

Hussain, who is running against incumbent A'Lynne Boles in the 3rd Ward, has the energy and determination to bring change to beleaguered southwest Lansing.

Dievendorf, the former executive director of the the gay rights organization Equality Michigan, showed her mettle by standing up against the dark-money group Capitol Region Progress. She promises to be an independent voice. We encourage voting just for her in the at-large race, even though two such seats are up. Carol Wood is a shoo-in for the other spot. Plunking for Dievendorf will improve her chances of winning.

We also urge support for the ballot proposal to limit contracts for appointed officials, such as the general manager of the Lansing Board of Water & Light. Passage would help protect taxpayers against huge payouts when such officials are dismissed.

In East Lansing, we support Erik Altmann, Nathan Triplett and Jermaine Ruffin.

Altmann's election would likely shift the balance on City Council in favor of a more skeptical approach toward giveaways to developers. As a member of the Planning Commission, he raised important issues about downtown development, opposing yet another downtown bar and the site plan for the Taco Bell development because it called for yet another student apartment building.

While we differ with Triplett on development issues, his energy and progressive views recommend him for reelection.

Ruffin has an impressive background of civic experience, including serving as a housing commissioner and an adviser to the city on Community Development Block Grants. His first priority is resolving downtown development issues. Moreover, if the memories of several longtime East Lansing politicos is correct, he would be the first African-American to ever be elected to its City Council. It's about time.