What support does the Coalition for a Better Memphis offer to candidates?
The CBM does not endorse or offer financial or promotional support to any candidate. The CBM strives to offer un-biased, non-partisan information to the public on each candidate's qualifications and on the candidate's positions on issues affecting Memphis and Shelby County. The CBM provides its ratings guide to the public for informational purposes only – not to promote specific candidates.
The CBM ratings process is strictly a resource to help voters as they determine which candidate they will support. Only voters determine the outcome of any race, and it is the mission of the CBM to provide voters with un-biased, non-partisan information. How voters use the CBM ratings is their decision – it is a personal choice for each voter.
How does the Coalition for a Better Memphis handle conflicts of interest?
The CBM always seeks to maintain an un-biased, non-partisan environment. However, when politically-involved individuals get together, conflicts of interest can arise. As such, the CBM has several policies in place to handle these situations so that the CBM ratings process remains un-biased and non-partisan.
For example, if a CBM Board member decides to run for a local political office, the Board member is no longer allowed to serve on the CBM Board. The former Board member will be allowed to go through the CBM ratings process, along with all of the other candidates running in that specific race. However, CBM Board members and anyone involved in the former Board member's political campaign will not be allowed to rate the former Board member or any of the candidates running in that specific race. This is to prevent anyone from making the claim that the former Board member was “favored” in the CBM ratings process.
Similarly, all volunteers are asked before the rating process begins if they are involved in the campaigns of any the candidates that they will be rating. If so, volunteers are not allowed to rate the candidate whose campaign they are involved in nor the other candidates in that specific race.
Not all potential conflicts of interest can be anticipated. Whenever a new conflict of interest arises, the CBM Board strives to settle the conflict in a way that maintains its un-biased, non-partisan core and that maintains the independent integrity of the organization.
I am a candidate running for office. Why did I not receive an invitation to participate in the Coalition for a Better Memphis's interviews or rating process?
The CBM only participates in City of Memphis and Shelby County elections – not federal, state, or municipal elections. After the filing deadline, the CBM receives a list of candidates who have filed to run for City-wide or County-wide elections from the Shelby County Election Commission. Informational packets are then mailed to each candidate to the address listed with the Election Commission.
If you are running for a City-wide or County-wide position and did not receive your informational packet at the address listed with the Election Commission, please contact Peggy Callahan, the CBM Executive Director, so that she can send your packet to you.