Archive for Wednesday, February 5, 2003

Candidates to sound off at forum

February 5, 2003

The 11 candidates running for three open positions on the Basehor City Council will face the voting public during a candidate's forum.

Current City Council member Chris Garcia will serve as moderator for the forum, which the Basehor Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13 at the Basehor-Linwood School District office.

Garcia and council members Burl Gratny and Joe Odle are up for re-election. However, only Odle is seeking an additional term.

Below is a question and answer with six of the City Council candidates, listed in alphabetical order. The remaining five candidates will appear in a similar question and answer in next week's Sentinel.

John Bonee is a local residential developer. He has lived in Basehor for 17 years. He has never held public office.

Why are you running? I have lived in this community most of my life and in the city limits of Basehor for 17 of the last 19 years. I have been fortunate to have others step up and do the work of the people. I feel it is my turn in the barrel.

What changes would you make in city government? There is no one thing in particular I see needing changed necessarily. I would just listen to the citizens and try to affect their will.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today? The lack of business. We must bring businesses into our city, but more importantly provide an atmosphere that encourages business startups among our own citizens. There are entrepreneurs all around us needing only that.

David K. Breuer is the owner of K.C. Construction, a local business for the past 26 years. He is a life-long Basehor resident and has served on the Basehor-Linwood School Board for eight years.

Why are you running? I've lived in this community all my life and feel this would be a great opportunity to serve the city of Basehor. With all the growth we are experiencing in this area, I feel my knowledge of business and planning could be a great benefit to the City Council.

What changes would you make in city government? I currently do not know of any issues that need to be addressed at this time.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today?

The most serious problem facing Basehor is the growth.

Steven C. Cole is a local residential developer. He has lived in Basehor for the past 19 years and was recently appointed to the Basehor Planning Commission.

Why are you running? I am running for City Council because I feel that our city is not being managed properly. In my opinion, too many mistakes are being made by our City Council that cost our city and its taxpayers money that we are not getting any benefit from. We need people on our City Council that have a business background to ensure our citizens tax dollars are spent properly to obtain the highest quality returns.

What changes would you make in city government? My first days in office, if elected, would be to push for an advisory board to the City Council to help form a very focused effort to cut cost where possible, review the overall management process of our City Hall and push for reasonable minimum building standards for new commercial and industrial development. I would also work to have the City Council reevaluate the city's comprehensive plan with input from local businesses, county officials and our citizens to help maintain and/or promote property values.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today?

The most serious problem, in my opinion, that faces Basehor today is the image that many, both residents and non-residents, have about our local government and how it operates. Public opinion plays a big part in how our city will move toward the future. With sound management, fair and comprehensive planning, unambiguous rules and regulations, and willingness to govern with common sense, our city can prosper. I believe that is what our citizens want and deserve from their elected officials and its employees.

Iris Dysart is the resident manager of the Hickory Villa senior center in Basehor. She has no previous experience in politics.

Why are you running? Friends have encouraged me to run for the council position. I have an interest in our city's development and would work for improvements to keep Basehor a nice community to live.

What changes would you make in city government? I feel I would have to be elected and involved with actions and issues with the council before I could predict changes that may be necessary and responsible.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today?

Meeting the growth and development challenge with essential, sensible management as dictated by budget constraints, the wishes of our citizens and what best serves our city.

Bob Harrison is a service department dispatcher for Capital Electric. He has never held public office but has had various positions through his church and other service organizations.

Why are you running? To serve the citizens of Basehor, and pay back what has been given to my family and myself. Hopefully, (I can) make a positive difference for our community.

What changes would you make in city government? I would like to see a strategic plan in place for both commercial and residential growth.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today? Growth and what type of growth. I believe growth is inevitable, but it should be educated, deliberate and practical to preserve our small-town atmosphere and community.

Bill Hooker is retired. He was elected Basehor mayor in 2001 and resigned in August of 2002.

Why are you running? No response.

What changes would you make in city government? I would like to see a moratorium on new building permits.

What is the most serious problem facing Basehor today? Growth, efficiency of operations in all departments and experience.

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