BURLEY — Five candidates will vie for three open four-year term seats on the Burley City Council during the Nov. 5 election and all of them say economic growth management in the city is one of their top concerns.
Incumbents John Craner, 64, and Russ Mallory, 72, are both in their second four-year terms on the council.
Lynn Davids, 65, Janet Hansen, 57, and Kimberli Seely, 48, joined them in the race for the seats.
Council members are paid $4,800 per year.
Mallory is a retired crop advisor and currently drives a bus part-time, Craner is a loan officer for Zions Bank, Seely is an adjunct professor at the College of Southern Idaho, Hansen is a registered nurse and small business owner and Davids is retired and formerly worked as the assistant superintendent at the city golf course.
“The city is trying to do things faster than it should,” Davids said about economic growth. “They are taking anything offered and it’s costing the taxpayers money.”
Davids said the city’s management of the golf course is a top issue for him and the city should lease the property. If the city leased the golf course it might not have to ask the taxpayers for levy funds for the library or the street department. He said the city also needs to work on establishing better relationships with other Mini-Cassia cities so they can work together towards a new airport.
Seely said the city needs to encourage growth while respecting residents through good planning. Attention should be paid to the proximity of industrial businesses to residential areas and there should be beautification requirements for industrial companies.
The golf course, infrastructure, the airport and law enforcement are also top issues, she said.
Seely would like to strengthen communication between the community and the city, tighten the budget and create a welcoming environment.
“I think I would bring needed representation of the city to the council,” she said.
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The coming growth, Hansen said, makes planning for services and infrastructure a top concern for the city council. The city also needs to examine the safety provided by law enforcement and the fire department.
“I do my homework and I think I have something to offer. I’m a good student and communicator and I will have the best interests of the citizens at heart and I will try to make the best decisions for the future,” said Hansen.
Mallory said there are many pressing issues facing the city, but two of the most important ones are the airport and the waste transfer station, the city has wanted to build for several years.
He brings a practical attitude and common sense to the position.
“I’m considerate and have a similar thought process and political views as many residents so I think I can speak for many of them,” Mallory said.
“The top issues for the city,” said Craner, “Are managing the success we’re having as a city and providing opportunities for the next generation by managing growth and creating jobs.”
Focusing attention on the downtown, which is challenged by two intersecting highways, finding traffic solutions for North Burley and the city golf course, which is losing money are also pressing issues, he said.
Craner brings his experience and institutional knowledge to the seat.
He is running for another term because serving on the council requires a “steep learning curve,” and it would be detrimental to the city to have too many council members replaced at one time.
“The turnover on the council needs to be slow,” he said.