Archive for Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Mayor seeking re-election; no one else files

Candidates’ deadline nears

January 17, 2007

Mayor Dave Taylor's standing alone -- at least for now.

Taylor is the only candidate to file for open seats in Tonganoxie city government.

Taylor's seat is up for election, as are the two city council seats held by Ron Cranor and Velda Roberts.

The filing deadline for the three open positions is noon next Tuesday. That deadline also applies to school board seats. The general election is set for April 3.

Taylor filed for re-election to a second four-year term as mayor on Tuesday.

City council members also serve four-year terms. Cranor and Roberts first were elected to the council in 2003.

In interviews this week, Roberts said she intends to seek re-election, while Cranor said he hasn't made up his mind. He's concerned, he said, that he doesn't have sufficient time to devote to the job, now that he's working full-time.

"We have taken on so many issues since I originally went on the council," Cranor said. "And my working full time has not allowed me the time to devote to the issues, which I know is important. So I'm struggling with that."

Roberts said she plans to file because she wants to continue working on city projects.

In an interview after he filed, the 71-year-old Taylor said he's enjoyed his four years in office.

"We have a lot going for the city right now," he said. "We have a lot of work to do and I felt if I didn't run again, the work probably would be finished by another mayor, but I would like to have the opportunity to finish it -- some of these projects brought forth in the last four years."

Specifically, Taylor pointed to additional sidewalks in Tonganoxie, as well as a water line the city plans to build to carry Board of Public Utility water from Kansas City, Kan., to Tonganoxie.

Taylor, who has lived in Tonganoxie since 1985, is married and has two children, three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. He is a retired contractor.

He stressed safety as a major issue in the mayor's race.

"Safety of the people -- that's really the most important part of my job, is to make sure the people are safe, the children are safe," he said. "The mayor really doesn't have a vote."

He would like to promote economic development more.

"We really lack in that -- getting businesses here," he said. "I know it's a long process, getting businesses, but I think we could do a better job."

And he's interested in starting a monthly mayor's forum, a time set aside for local residents to talk with him -- or whoever is elected mayor.

"I'll be down there, if they want to come, and have coffee and doughnuts," he said. "And if nothing else, we can just sit around and talk. ... I think we need to have the citizens have more input. Sometimes when you're in public office, you forget who put you there.

"Let's just put the mayor on the hot seat."

Commenting has been disabled for this item.