Budget, roads among issues facing Clearfield council candidates

Jul 31 2013 - 11:38pm

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Bruce Young
Randy Goodnight
Benjamin Larsen
Keri Benson
Davis Tomczak
Bruce Young
Randy Goodnight
Benjamin Larsen
Keri Benson
Davis Tomczak

CLEARFIELD -- Candidates are bracing themselves to vie for two open council positions, and each has his or her own ideas of the issues facing the city, from budgets to roads.

A primary election will be held Aug. 13 to narrow the field of six candidates: Bruce Young, Randy Goodnight, Benjamin Larsen, Keri Benson, Davis Tomczak and Ron Jones.

As an incumbent, Bruce Young, a 36-year-old cost analyst, is running for his second term on the council. He wants to continue his work of improving the city.

Young said his experience and education in management and finance, together with strong analytical skills, are assets to the city and add depth to council deliberations.

"I have been able to help ensure that the city is well-managed, and in a second term, I will continue to do so," Young said.

Young wants the city to continue on a path of long-term improvement with advances in safety and quality of life in neighborhoods. His goals would involve financial responsibility, economic growth and using a long-term perspective for decisions.

"We need to provide the critical services, such as security and infrastructure, while being financially responsible," Young said.

Part of improving the city for Goodnight, a 64-year-old with 24 years of experience working for the city, is working on attracting businesses. He wants to keep established businesses while attracting new ones, too. He said the city also needs to work to establish curb appeal, with landscaped entrances to the city, and modernize the city entrance signs to attract new business and residents.

Goodnight feels he has the creativity and responsibility to help serve the city.

"I have a passion to get things completed on time and within budget," he said. "I am committed to helping Clearfield be the greatest city possible, with unity between Clearfield city officials, its residents, local businesses, city employees and visitors."

Larsen, a 30-year-old attorney at Farr, Kaufman, Nichols, Olds, Kaufman & Rasmussen and small-business owner of Peaches & Cream L.L.C, agrees that economic development is key.

His No.1 goal is to continue Mayor Don Wood's efforts to inspire economic development in Clearfield.

"There is much to be done to drive businesses to Clearfield," Larsen said. "A key to economic development will be opening up more high-quality residential space, which will bring more people to the community.

"As more people come, so does more money, which means that more businesses will want to be here. As more businesses come, so comes higher tax revenues, which will allow us to do more to improve our community programs, local infrastructure and roads."

More than that, he wants to be a problem solver for the city's residents while continuing to keep up and improve city programs and roads.

Benson, a 42-year-old homemaker, also wants to involve residents and be a true representative for the people. She wants to move past her role as a planning commissioner to be a council member to represent all her neighbors and their concerns.

Benson said she wants to see the city unified.

"Everyone I speak with has a different concern about the city, and it's a community that needs to come together with many different visions," she said. "It's our (residents) that need to bring their ideas to the council so we can help them."

She wants to take the time to know the issues important to residents -- whether it be a desire for chickens in the neighborhood or speeding issues in residential areas -- and connect.

"When I'm connected with my community, listening to and understanding their opinions, I can accomplish great things on their behalf," Benson said.

Her philosophy is: "See a need, fill a need."

Tomczak, a 23-year-old who works in security, believes that thinking outside the box will improve the residents' lifestyle. He hopes, if elected, he can add more education opportunities within the city, cut unneeded spending and improve street conditions.

He said issues such as the water shortage, traffic flow and street conditions are priorities for him.

Jones is also running for a city council position. Multiple attempts to reach him were unsuccessful.

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