Archive for Thursday, March 27, 2003

Candidates prepare for election

City Council, school board candidates vie for positions in April 1 election

March 27, 2003

Five candidates for Basehor City Council chose their words carefully Monday night as they met the public for the last time before the general election.

On Tuesday, April 1, 1,575 registered voters in the city of Basehor will have the option to decide on three open City Council positions.

The polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.

The polling place for this year's election is Father Quinlan Hall at the Holy Angels Catholic Church, 15438 Leavenworth Road.

It's hoped that more voters will turn out at the polls than at the candidate forum. Approximately 20 people -- .012 percent of the voting public -- attended the forum.

Six candidates are running for three open positions. They are: Iris Dysart, John Bonee, Joe Odle, Bill Hooker, Joe Hotujac and David Breuer.

Odle, an incumbent, was the only candidate not at Monday night's candidate forum.

Candidates were careful to distinguish themselves from each other Monday night.

A sign, made by a private Basehor resident, placed downtown on 155th Street promoted three candidates -- Bill Hooker, John Bonee and Iris Dysart.

However, the City Council hopefuls were quick to point out the candidates recommended on the sign are not running as a ticket.

"We're not running as a slate," Hooker said. "They may not want to be lumped in with me and I may not want to be lumped in with them."

But assoing Basehor today such as growth and taxes

They also said whether they would be in favor of downtown buildings relocating south to 158th Street.

Below are brief profiles of each candidate and their responses to questions posed during the forum.

They are listed in accordance to their finish in the Feb. 25 primary election.

Name: Iris Dysart

Age: not available

Address:15426 Hickory Street

Occupation: Hickory Villa resident manager

Primary finish: first place, 119 votes

Previous work experience: 14 years of banking and office administration

Prior public office experience: none

Position on downtown moving south: against

Position on growth: "I'm certainly not against growth, but I think there needs to be more communication between the City Council and the Planning Commission," Dysart said.

Quotable: "Basehor is my home and I plan to be here a very long-time," Dysart said.

"I want to help improve it, to work with the development and growth and keep Basehor the nice place it is to live," she added.

Name: John Bonee

Age: 40

Address: 14500 Parallel

Occupation: residential and commercial developer

Primary finish: second place, 98 votes

Prior public office: none

Position on downtown moving south: against

Position on growth: pro-growth if developments are strong assets to the community. "It is about taxes. You need someone to help carry the burden," he said.

Quotable: "What you do affects you as a resident of Basehor," Bonee said when asked about developers serving as City Council members. "You wouldn't be running if you didn't have pride and the best interest of the community at heart."

Name: Joe Odle

Age: 67

Occupation: Kansas state fire marshal

Primary finish: third place, 76 votes

Prior public office: current City Council member and former city mayor

Odle did not attend the candidate forum.

Name: Bill Hooker

Age: 63

Occupation: retired

Previous work experience: banking, industrial and construction industries

Primary finish: tied for fourth place, 72 votes

Prior public office: Basehor mayor, Basehor-Linwood School Board member

Position on downtown moving south: against

Position on growth: wants to slow residential development in Basehor so the city can "catch up to what's already being built." Favors more commercial development.

Quotable: "I'm not anti-growth," Hooker said. "I'm for planned growth. I think the city has annexed and got enough new subdivisions."

"I was deemed virtually useless while I was there," said Hooker of his resignation from mayor in 2002. "As a City Council member I would have a vote and the mayor doesn't."

Name: Joe Hotujac

Age: 58

Occupation: toolmaker and machinist

Primary finish: tied for fourth place, 72 votes

Prior public office: none

Position on downtown moving south: against

Position on growth: in favor of more restricted growth. "You can't overpower yourself with expenses," Hotujac said. "If the building does not cover the expenses, I don't know why you should give (building permits) out."

Quotable: "If (a developer) wants to develop, they should be the ones to pay for (costs associated with the development)," Hotujac said.

"We all manage things, we manage a home," he said. "I'm just trying to put my input forward to see what's best for Basehor."

Name: David K. Breuer

Age: 51

Occupation: owns K.C. Construction, a Basehor business

Primary finish: fifth place, 66 votes

Prior public office: Basehor-Linwood School Board member

Position on downtown moving south: against

Position on growth: in favor. "If we don't get development to a certain degree, taxes will go way up.

"I know I wouldn't be excited about seeing 10, 12 mills go up," he added.

Quotable: "There's only so many houses that can built, so many houses people can buy," Breuer said. "I'd work with the Planning Commission to develop a game plan for this community.

"Elect people that can plan and make critical decisions," he added.


School Board candidates

There are four candidates running unopposed for Basehor-Linwood School Board.

They are: Danny Dearinger, Kerry Mueller, Dayna Miller and Douglas Bittel.

Mueller, currently the school board president, and Dearinger are seeking re-election.

Bittel works in the research lab at Children's Mercy Hospital. He also teaches a class at Kansas City Kansas Community College.

He said class size and continuing education are important educational issues he would address should he secure a seat April 1.

Miller is a Basehor resident with a degree in elementary education.

She works part-time for a family business in Tonganoxie and volunteers as a YouthFriend in the Basehor-Linwood School District.

She also works on the school district's bond issue campaign committee.

Leavenworth County Clerk Linda Sheer said as long as the candidates receive more votes than a write-in candidate, they would win the positions.

The Sentinel will receive election results from the Leavenworth County Clerk's Office Tuesday night. Once the results are received, they will be posted on the newspaper web-site, aside, candidates weighed in their opinions on issues fac

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