On the Issues
has been at a physical crossroads ever since its founding at
the point where the
and Oregon Trails divided in frontier times, so it stands at
a crossroads today - a crossroads of commerce, identity, and
the past vs. the future.
Whether we wish to admit it or not,
over the last ten years,
has changed – and it will continue to change in the next ten
years, and beyond.
There is no putting the genie
back in the bottle, or turning back the clock.
is, for good or ill, no longer the sleepy farm community of
even a decade ago, and we need to responsibly manage the
development that will inevitably move into this city going
the BNSF Intermodal Logistics Hub, which I believe holds
great potential benefits for the citizens of Gardner
the people of this city are listened to.
I believe that
over the last several years, a serious disconnect has
developed between our elected representatives – at all
levels of government – and those that they were supposed to
Too often today, decisions are
made by our elected leaders "for our own good," even though
they run directly counter to what their constituents want.
This practice needs to stop.
leaders that will be independent of special interests –
leaders that are responsive
with the trust that the voters place in them.
This is one of several reasons
why I am running for City Council.
“We cannot let ourselves be bullied and dictated to by large development
interests in the name of ‘progress.’”
needs to explore ways to encourage “user friendly”
commercial development projects that enhance the quality of
life of the city, without groveling before big development
interests or taking on projects we either cannot afford, or
will needlessly compound infrastructure or public works
commercial development will diversify our tax base and will
not put the entire burden of the cost of future
infrastructure and services on the shoulders of our
residents – a burden that today approaches 85% of all tax
At the same time,
we cannot, as a city, allow ourselves to be bullied and
dictated to by large developers in the name of “progress.”
The rights and the collective
voice of the people must be respected.
I will serve as a tireless
champion of the peoples’ rights to their personal property,
and will aggressively fight the misuse of eminent domain and
zoning laws as a tool to benefit private business interests.
I believe that we have a master
plan for a reason, and that it shouldn’t be ignored or
tossed out the window in order to attract large developers
to our city.
“Elected representatives need
to remember that it is they
who serve their constituents,
the other way around.”
Being an elected
representative means that you are the executor of a sacred
contract between the people and their government.
Declaration of Independence states that “…governments are
instituted among men, deriving their just powers
from the consent of the governed.”
representatives at every level – whether they are city
council members, county commissioners, state house and
senate members, or US congressmen and senators – must
understand that it is they
who serve their constituents,
the other way around.
I pledge, as an At-Large candidate for
Gardner City Council, that I will honor this sacred
contract; that I will listen to and respect the ideas and
concerns of our citizens; and that I will work to bring not
government to our city.
Our citizens, and future
generations who have to live with the decisions we make
today, deserve nothing less.
“We cannot mistake our good planning in the past for an excuse to stop
looking for ways to make all of our city government more
is currently projected to run a $1 million+ budget deficit
this year, with additional deficits projected for at least
two more years.
I believe that the steps that
the City has taken in past years – including putting away
substantial amounts of cash into a “rainy day” contingency
fund – have allowed us to forgo some of the tough decisions
that other cash-strapped municipalities, such as Overland
Park and Olathe, have been forced to make.
However, we cannot mistake our
good planning for an excuse to stop looking for ways to make
all of our city government more efficient.
We must continue to look to create
efficiencies and do more with less, and foster smart
commercial development that will contribute to the tax
rolls, so that we can maintain and grow our strong financial
position going forward.
I am very much in favor of streamlining and automating
processes in government, going to paperless and web-based
solutions where we can, and re-evaluating whether certain
administrative processes or
departments are duplicated or are even needed.
A significant portion of a business’s expenses go
toward compliance with federal, state, and local mandates.
If our city government can do more with less and do
it better, we can significantly improve everyone’s bottom
lines – without tax increases or service cuts.