4 with Morgan City Council experience set themselves apart

Oct 12 2011 - 12:01am

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DeOrr J. Peterson
F. Lynn Mickelsen
Jeff Wardell
Tony London
DeOrr J. Peterson
F. Lynn Mickelsen
Jeff Wardell
Tony London

MORGAN -- All four candidates for three at-large, four-year Morgan City Council seats have experience in the position they seek in November's election.

Incumbent Tony London, 56, has 14 years on the city council. A plant terminal manager at Holcim, London said the biggest issue facing the city is balancing the budget in lean economic times.

London said the city already has made significant attempts at being fiscally responsible by cutting costs associated with its justice court and law enforcement. In addition, the construction loan for its city hall was paid off in June.

"We've made some huge steps at being fiscally responsible," he said.

If elected, London also plans to keep an eye on aging infrastructure, such as the city's sewer system, as well as rates associated with paying for necessary upgrades.

F. Lynn Mickelsen, 76, has 20 years of service on the city council. He also recently served as the city's public works director for three and a half years.

Mickelsen said the best way to tackle Morgan city residents' high taxes is to establish a stronger commercial tax base. To do so, he would take an active role in seeking out businesses that would make a good match in Morgan County.

"I have lots of time to dedicate to the city council, and I work hard," said Mickelsen, who retired from Hill Air Force Base.

Incumbent DeOrr J. Peterson, 82, has spent 14 years on the city council. He agrees with Mickelsen that the city needs to expand its business tax base.

Peterson, also a retiree from Hill Air Force Base, said the city has made strides toward economic development by securing a location for Davis Applied Technology College's entrepreneurial center.

He said he will be watching and encouraging plans to locate a hotel in the city and redevelop the Como Springs area.

"I want to see the city keeps moving along. I have no axes to grind."

Incumbent Jeff Wardell, 55, has served on the city council for two years. He also has experience with the street department, board of adjustments, planning and zoning, library board and emergency preparedness.

Wardell would like to see the city come up with an industrial park in an effort to keep tax revenue in Morgan.

"We need to have a place for new businesses to operate out of instead of (workers) having to commute," said the vice president and senior estimator of SkyView Excavation and Grading, a Morgan-based business.

"We have loved raising our children in Morgan and would like to try to find a way to bring new industries into Morgan city as a way of offering more opportunities for future generations to live and work in this beautiful valley."

Wardell said his 33 years of construction experience helps him curb the city's construction and road maintenance costs.

"I think, with my business contacts and experience, I am in a position to be able to facilitate help in securing the economic growth of Morgan city."

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