Thursday, October 22, 2009

Standard Examiner – City Council Candidate Profiles

The Standard Examiner is doing their usual candidate profiles. I was excited to see them posted for us to enjoy. Each one is very interesting and well worth the read. I have highlighted a few key points I enjoyed from each candidate and have included links to the articles.

1. Bryan Benard (See Profile Here)

Bryan has some well thought out ideas on South Ogden. Personally I keep wondering, why he is just now running! I think he would be a great addition to the council. One of things that struck me was the following:

"We need to resist the urge to continue making South Ogden a place for strip malls/single offices and focus on attracting a wider retail and business presence that will both serve our citizens' physical needs as well as strengthening our tax base, thereby reducing the tax burden on individuals"

Note: Bryan on his twitter page said, "Kinda upset with the Standard's 2nd major typo on me in the election. Today misquotes me as saying "SMALL" instead of "SMART" growth is top issue, makes me sound anti-development, which I am not. I'm for smart development. Big difference and affects context of rest of article."

Make sure you make that correction when you read it.

2. Russ Porter (See Profile Here)

Russ highlighted a key concern I have, that is ordinance enforcement. I hope, if elected, he really takes this head on. Recent council decision have only masked the problem, not fixed it. I have heard from many that they feel confident in Russ and see him as a real people person. One statement he made about his decision making process should real promise:

Consensus comes when an issue has been researched well, the desires of the community have been ascertained, and then effective communication is achieved within the group."

We often here politicians say this same thing. I feel he is sincere in his desire to make this happen.

Personal note: Russ emailed me recently calling me out on my connection to him and Vicky Mattson. Yes it was a stretch, but also how I viewed things from where I sit (name of blog). Thanks for the email Russ, I am sure it won't be the last time I stretch something. Keep up the good work.

3. Lamont Camp (See Profile Here)

Lamont spends most of his time talking about the property taxes that we pay here in South Ogden. I can't agree with him more that I am frustrated with the increase of property taxes for a gym facility that admittedly know one is going to use.

Lamont said,

"That is Taxation as it is all over our Country. Ours is a bit different in that our property taxes are being increased for the enlargement of South Ogden Jr. High School Gymnasium. There needs to be more emphasis on our Children's Programs, Police Presents and Fire Protection and other items that involve the Citizens (All Ages) and their money."

I am frustrated and hope if elected he pushes for a better solution to this problem. The fact the council moved forward with a property tax increase during a recession and after scores of people complained in council meeting is beyond understanding. I see a trend that goes back to the Golf City issues of our council not listening to the people.

Hopefully these are tools for your to help make a decision. The election is coming up quick and early voting has already begun. Good Luck to all the candidates!

The blog is now open for your comments and feelings on the candidates. I ask, where do you want to see this city go and how can these new council members make it happen. Two of these three gentlemen will be elected, who will it be?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Early Voting Begins

Early voting officially begins today. Personally I am a "vote on election day" kind of guy. However many of you will be making up your mind starting today. So to help, I thought I would share a number of resources to help you make a decision.

Bryan Benard, who is running for City Council, has created a number of ways to get to know him:

Lamont Camp, also running for council, is also on facebook:

The only one of the council members I have yet to see embrace social media is Russ Porter, this maybe in connection with Vicki Mattson. She has not embraced the web fully either and I tend to see Russ Porter Signs every where I see Vicki Mattson signs.

Hopefully these links give you some ideas on whom to vote for. I will be posting some more detailed candidate info soon.

Good Luck all.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Ordinance changes in response to debate?

During the mayoral and council debate we had on September 3rd. The topic of city cleanup ordinances and how slow they are was discussed. A number of sitting council members and potentials were debating the issue of what to do. You can see full coverage of the debates on the following two posts: (Mayoral, City Council). The main point derived from the debate was the ordinance was to slow and was hard to enforce. Interestingly most of the current council recognized this and appeared to have known it was the problem all a long. My question is, if they knew it was a problem, why hasn't it been fixed?

No worries, the council has now acted. Today's Standard Examiner reports on the topic (See Here). The old ordinance, stating residents have 60 days to comply with cleanup ordinances, has been updated to say they now have 10 days to comply.

What a change! I applaud the council for making such a change. Now lets hope for strong enforcement.

The door is open to discuss how this ordinance came to be and is it a good thing.