Family: My daughter Audrey is 8 years old and loves her father. My wife, Ida, hates the fact that Audrey is a daddy’s girl.
Occupation: I wear many hats at my the company I work for, but the title on my business card reads “Regional Account Manager”. It’s a fancy way of saying I’m a sales rep.
Previous civic and community involvement: No civic experience as of yet. However, I’ve been volunteering with various campaigns for causes I believe in.
1. What prompted you to run for the Zimmerman City Council?
Two peaple come to mind: Ron Paul and Greg Laney. Ron Paul inspired me to get up off my posterieor and do something about the problems we face as a society. Greg Laney was my conduit into civic life because we had the same day care provider. We got to talking and talking became action.
2. What makes you qualified to be a member of the City Council?
I know what it’s like to run a business. I managed a movie theater when I was 19, and I had my first job when I was 12. I’m no stranger to hard work. I was in the Army for 4 years as a Military Policeman, and gained rank fast. I made corporal in two years from buck private. I’ve been a student of the budget after going over it with the city clerk: Kary Tillman.
3. What are the top three issues facing the City of Zimmerman?
1. Attracting new businesses to Zimmerman
2. Getting rid or city ordinances that make no common sense.
3. Maintaining safe neighborhoods
4. What distinguishes you from your opponents and makes you a better choice for the position?
I’ve been around the world, and have seen what works and what doesn’t. I believe in the power of strong neighborhoods. Ones where we all know each others’ names, and notice when you leave the garage door up, and call you to inform. I believe in personal freedom and responsibility. I’ve lived in the area most of my life, and in Zimmerman for 10. I’ve seen a lot of changes.
5. What decisions of the council have you liked, and which ones have you disliked?
A while back it decided to eliminate the Building Inspections position, and contract the inspections out. That saved the city money. It was during a period of time when new home construction was at a literal stand still. I supported it.
One that I didn’t support was one that forced businesses to have a certain look to the front of their buildings. In this economy?
6. What are your thoughts on the groundswell of support for an auditorium in Zimmerman. What role should the city play in this endeavor. What role would you play in this endeavor.
If it generates a profit, I’m all for it. If it comes off of the backs of taxpayers that are taxed enough already, then I don’t. If it got State and Federal money to do it, then the cost is shifted to another group of taxpayers that are already taxed too much already.
7. What should the city’s role be in improving transportation in the short-term and the long term.
If we’re a growing community, then the roads are to accommodate that many more cars. We don’t need to be making up projects just because it would look nice. Just look at the city of Ramsey. They are known for 2 things: The Taj Mahal, and the parking ramp in the middle of nowhere. Zimmerman is never to take on any senseless projects like that on my watch.
8. What will your approach be to balancing the city’s budget. Under what conditions would you support a tax increase.
Three words: trimming the fat. In every city, there is always some position that is up for debate. They also got a different health care provider that is less expensive. As far as raising taxes, it would have to be a natural disaster of biblical proportions for that to happen.
9. What are the needs of the youth in Zimmerman, and what can be done about them?
I believe that if you keep children busy, trouble doesn’t seem to be a factor. There are many opportunities for kids: Youth baseball, soccer, and just about any sport under the sun. There is Awana at the Evangelical Free church on Wednesday’s. Boys and Girl scouts. Community education has lots to offer, especially in the summer.
10. How would you assess the level of partnership between the City of Zimmerman and other governmental agencies. Do you see a need for more collaboration, and, if so, where?
We have enough outside interference as it is with the department of education. We don’t need the MET Council telling us what to do either. Unaccountable, non-elected so-called experts don’t live in the communities that they make decisions for. Therefore I don’t see a need to collaborate, just learn from other municipalities mistakes.
11. What needs to be done to support economic development in the City of Zimmerman?
I support a tax freeze on new businesses, if it makes sense. Also, some of these ordinances that don’t make sense need to go. In this economy, we don’t need another hurdle for some small business to jump over. We need to do what Rogers did. Invite businesses and listen to them. Listen to their ideas, and don’t chase them out with sewer and water hook up fees.
12. What would you like to be able to say about Zimmerman in 10 years that can’t be said now?
We expanded our borders, instead of other cities encroaching on our borders.