James Corcoran has been a resident of Knoxville for twenty years. He graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Bachelors Degree in English with a Minor in Political Science. He graduated Cum Laude from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 2005 with a concentration in Advocacy and Dispute Resolution.
Since he obtained his law license in 2005, James has dedicated his practice to representing individuals, children, and families. As a small business owner with his own law practice, his work has an emphasis in Child Welfare law, including work as a Guardian Ad Litem- representing the best interests of at-risk children in Knoxville and Maryville. Additionally, his general civil practice has included property law, contract law, and child custody issues.
James currently sits on the Board of Zoning Appeals for Knox County, an appointment he received from Randy Smith, Knox County Commissioner.
What are three factors you feel are most critical to continuing Knoxville’s steady economic growth? How do you plan to support these factors?
One factor contributing to Knoxville’s economic growth is the State’s conservative approach- keeping taxes low and reducing excessive regulation. This has helped job growth across the State. We can help Knoxville benefit more by identifying areas in the City Code where we are interfering with business, and ensuring that we spend responsibly so that we do not have to increase taxes.
Secondly, we have a lot of “intellectual capital” due to the presence of the University of Tennessee. Retaining an educated workforce is a necessary pillar to build our local economy. Accordingly, we need to ensure that we have an attractive, vibrant City that is likely to retain our young, educated members of the workforce. I believe that the next step to all the progress we have made downtown is improvement on our major commercial corridors, including Broadway, Western Ave., Magnolia, and Chapman Highway.
Thirdly, I believe our local business leadership, including the Chamber’s Innovation Valley initiative, has contributed and will continue to contribute to using our region’s resources. I believe that the City can continue to partner with the Chamber to encourage businesses to relocate to Knoxville, and we can use the City’s resources to promote these efforts.
What is the biggest challenge facing Knoxville businesses today? How do you plan to address this issue if elected?
One thing I’ve heard repeatedly from local businesses is that it is easier to do business in the County as opposed to the City, due to excessive “red tape”. We need to take a good look at our current codes and see if we can reduce excessive regulation.
In what specific ways would you like to see Knoxville’s young professionals more engaged in our community?
I am the youngest candidate in the current crop of Council candidates. I believe that the City has perhaps tried a bit too hard to be “hip” and has focused a bit too much on trying to tell younger professionals what the City administration believes that young people want, instead of seeking out opinions. We should take active steps to encourage membership of younger professionals in our governmental boards and commissions.
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