Archive for Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bixby eyes spending cuts

Dennis Bixby

Dennis Bixby

March 30, 2011

Dennis Bixby is a wood carver by trade, but the Tonganoxie resident says he doesn’t have an ax to grind when it comes to running for the Tonganoxie City Council.

Bixby, who is challenging incumbents Bill Peak and Paula Crook for one of two seats on the city council, said he’s concerned with what he calls wild spending.

He said it’s important that the city build its cash reserve back up so that if a good opportunity comes along with a business, possibly at the industrial park in the works south of Tonganoxie, the city has money to do infrastructure work without borrowing money.

“Or if we lose a fire truck, we could replace it without having to borrow money,” he said.

On the campaign trail, he’s heard concerns about the number of vacant businesses in Tonganoxie.

“If we can fill those businesses up, it’s going to make it easier on everybody,” Bixby said about the larger tax base. “If we can’t, we’ll continue to probably lose businesses.”

He continued to discuss the economic climate.

“And that’s everybody’s biggest concern, is the economy,” he said. “The price of gas doesn’t help anything. People were worried about already cutting back.

“The taxes that we’ve got with the 1 percent sales tax last July and now (we) could be hit with the bond issue taxes. They’re just wondering where is it all going to stop.”

Bixby said in speaking with some voters, he heard of Tonganoxie city council members, several years ago before Tonganoxie had the city administrator position, being assigned to different departments to be kept up to date with what’s happening in that department.

A council member even was assigned to the school district to keep in touch there. Overall, it was a way to have a “finger on the pulse” of the various departments, and Bixby said it’s something he’d like to see implemented again.

Bixby, 50, has a degree in industrial technology from Fort Hays State University and is a former construction project manager with experience in drafting and design.

He said the background would be beneficial as a council member, as he’s been a contractor and bought services from contractors.

“I know how to read the blueprints, but also the specifications,” Bixby said. “There’s a lot of times, little things are hidden in the details. And I’m very detail-oriented … you’ve got to know when to spend a dollar and when not to.

“That’s going to be the biggest thing. I look for all the rocks and snakes and everything else that can jump out and get you, and I try to plan accordingly to avoid those things, whatever the pitfall may be.”

Bixby answered a questionnaire submitted to city council and school board candidates. His answers can be viewed online at:


getagrip 7 years ago

Mr. Bixby finally sounds like a candidate for city council instead of a candidate against the bond issue. While I was willing to listen to Mr. Bixby's views as a candidate for city council I got lost in all his involvement in the school bond issue, which as I see it has nothing to do at this point with running for city council.

My vote is for Bill Peak who has remained free of the bond gossip and in my opinion has served the city council in an excellent capacity. When I have called upon him, he has made things happen!


hricane23 7 years ago


Excellent points! And I would like to remind you that we're voting for two of three candidates. Remember that voting for only Mr. Peak will not "wash out" a vote for Mr. Bixby or Mrs. Crook. Be sure to vote for 2!


Tongiescout 7 years ago

I like the points that Mr. Bixby makes but there are a lot bigger issues at hand. Industry and businesses are not going to move into Tonganoxie if we don't have the infrastructure to support it.

When a business looks at the limited police, fire, and public services we have to offer they are more inclined to go to a bigger city that can better provide said services. Every week there are more and more comments about bike paths, school bond issues, and the never ending studies about studies to decide if we should do a study to see if a project is feasible. We have underfunded police, fire, and public works, that is the bottom line. Our police officers, firefighters, and public works employees do an exceptional job with what they have to work with but they should have better. I would gladly pay more to have better law enforcement capability, fire protection, and public works.

I wish that the city council would start understanding that without having a solid city government and services we are never going to grow. Businesses will just keep going down the road and being successful else ware.


Indian 7 years ago

Seriously, Mr Bixby has no clue on what needs that are important to the city. He is so wrap up in the school bond and the school. He thinks he knows what the school needs are and he is wrong on that. I wouldn't let him lead my dog on a chain more less the city!!!!!


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