Fisher: Let's keep Soldotna moving in right direction

Posted: Friday, October 01, 2010

"Why do you want to run for City Council?"

If you follow elections in America you will be familiar with many hot button phrases. "Change," "cut the budget," "reduce spending," "reign in government," and "out of control" are some examples. I would like to introduce a couple of new ones.

Thanks

Good Job

These are two phrases that should be heard more often. Especially to everyday citizens who make the investment of their time and money to pursue local office. We need to recognize those in our community who serve us for very little reward. Often times, the only reward is ridicule from the people that elected them.

Thank you for giving us a city budget that has been reduced by fifteen percent in the last two years. We need to keep this proactive form of management. Preparation for the loss in sales tax revenue as well as our current national economy is a must. Local government must always be good stewards of their citizen's money; if I am elected I will maintain this fiscal responsibility.

Thank you for increasing our quality of life. Mandated by voters last year, the council and administration moved swiftly to develop and implement a plan for Soldotna Memorial Park. Soon the city residents will have a beautiful park in which to memorialize our loved ones. Soldotna Community Playground is up and running with support of the council, many volunteers and donors, and some serious hard work from some dedicated mothers. Construction has begun to improve Soldotna Creek Park; a needed improvement for better access and parking. Soldotna is competing with communities locally and across the state for new business and new residents. We should not be nave to the fact that the quality of life a city provides is a major factor in these decisions. My family chose to live in Soldotna primarily for that reason. Investing in these projects is an investment in our future.

Thank you for the foresight to Envision Soldotna in the year 2030. Any successful business or organization will tell you that part of their success is having a plan for the future that everyone is working towards together. Our city is no different. Without a plan of what we want our city to look and feel like in twenty years we would grow and develop with no sense of community or consistency. We must always keep in mind the decisions we make today will affect residents for generations to come. With that in mind we must make sure our laws and regulations promote business development, encourage new residents to move in, and always keeping the small and welcoming feel to the city. I believe this plan is very good step in that direction.

I believe our city is on the right path. That is the main reason I am running for City Council. We must continue to manage our resident's money wisely and effectively by keeping sales tax and the mil rate at reasonable levels. We do this by keeping the city efficient, prioritizing our spending needs, and critically evaluating each spending request. I think the current administration and council have shown a pattern of doing this. I will continue this behavior at every opportunity. There will always be room for improvement in our city. For example, parking laws require excessive parking for businesses in the city. This puts a burden on business to build and maintain larger parking lots than needed. Building these parking lots requires the natural vegetation to be destroyed, lessening the beautification of our city, and remove natural filter for the Kenai River. We can fix this, and I plan on it. I would like to see Soldotna become more of a convention center destination. We have the lodging capacity with local businesses and the Sports Center can provide the needed display and meeting space. With successful marketing and execution, I believe we can set the groundwork for Soldotna to have its own convention center. Bringing much needed off season revenue to the local economy.

Soldotna is a great city and is headed in the right direction; I want to keep it that way. I have been to many council meetings and have informed myself on all the relevant issues. I am the best choice for Seat E to keep Soldotna on its path of success and growth. As for Peter Micciche, Nels Anderson, Brenda Hartman, Dale Bagley, Peggy Mullen, Ed Sleater, and Shea Hutchings: Thanks and Good Job



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