Archive for Thursday, March 29, 2007

Eudora City Council candidate Q&A (Part I)

March 29, 2007

The polls will open Tuesday for voters to decide who will fill three open seats on the Eudora City Council for the next four years. There are three candidates running for the three open seats. Unless a write-in candidate mounts a successful campaign, each will win a place on the council. The candidates answered a set of questions, which appear below.

Maria Nelson
Q: What do you see as the biggest challenges facing the city over the next four years?
A: I think that the single biggest challenge is probably going to be managing the growth of the city in a positive way. Both the growth from a residential standpoint and from a financial standpoint of managing both residential and commercial growth and making sure they are the best they can be for the current residents.

Q: What do you view as the most positive aspects of the city right now?
A: I think the most positive aspect is our community we are living in now. I think we have a great group of people in town. The city has a lot of heart. I think that's going to carry it a long ways.

Q: What actions do you see yourself taking to maintain the positive aspects?
A: I think we definitely need to move forward with the beautification of the city ---- that includes revitalizing the downtown district. I think we also need to take a holistic view of beautifying the city and reaching out to the city and getting the residents involved in really taking pride in the community.

Q: Are there any particular programs or initiatives you want to bring to the city in the next four years?
A: I'd like to start some sort of more formal recycling program. I don't know if this has been breached before or how difficult it would be to be an option -- even if the option is curbside pickup or formalizing some kind of center.

Jeff Peterson
Q: What do you see as the biggest challenges facing the city over the next four years?
A: I think a lot of our challenges are focused around growth and development, and how we are going to share the cost of that between new development and existing homeowners. I think that's by far the biggest challenge.

Q: What do you see as the most positive aspects of the city right now?
A: I think the opportunity that we have with the growth is very positive. We're hoping it will bring or create more jobs, because of our location. We have a great opportunity to grow, whereas a lot of cities in the state don't have an opportunity and are getting smaller and not by choice.

Q: What actions do you see yourself taking to maintain the positive aspects?
A: I want to see us a strike a fair balance between those contingencies of the existing homeowners and the new developers and their proposals to continue to move forward with growth. I also think potentially we should be more aggressive on the economic development front and create some kind of partnership with the chamber to attract more employers.
Q: Are there any particular programs or initiatives you want to bring to the city in the next four years?
A: It wasn't my idea, but I do think the idea of bringing on a full-time economic development person, whether it's a full-time city person or shared with private enterprise. I think that is a good goal and a good initiative that will help us broaden our tax base in the long run. We should continue, I think, what we're doing now. There are a lot of things going on with downtown beautification, the TIF district and Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Fred Stewart
Q: What do you see as the biggest challenges facing the city over the next four years?
A: Getting the sewer under the highway and White Dog Road. Lawrence Memorial Hospital bought ground near White Dog Road, and they want to be able to have lines out there and there's no sewer under the highway on that side.

Q: What do you as the most positive aspects of the city right now?
A: I'm excited about trying to maintain the growth of Eudora and keeping the utilities down the best we can and that kind of thing, because we pay them.

Q: What actions do you see yourself taking to maintain the positive aspects?
A: Just to go to the meetings and try to get along with every council member and maintain a steady level and vote for the people of Eudora. I will not get worked up about anything and keep it maintained as best you can.

Q: Are there any particular programs or initiatives you want to bring to the city in the next four years?
A: Not right now, but I'll probably think of one after I've been on the council awhile and feel my way around some.
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