FARMINGTON -- Changes are coming to city leadership this election cycle.
Mayor Scott Harbertson is stepping down and Councilman Jim Talbot is running unopposed to replace him, leaving three of five city council positions up for election.
The mayor's wife, Kristen Harbertson, opposes Doug Richard Anderson in one council race for a two-year seat, to finish the term originally started by Nelsen Michaelson. Michelson took a new job out of town and was replaced by Cindy Roybal, who has opted not to seek re-election.
The other race for two four-year seats is headed by incumbent John Bilton, with former councilman Rick Dutson, Jeffrey Steele and Planning Commissioner Brigham Mellor rounding out the field.
The election is set for Tuesday, Nov. 5.
Bilton is the only incumbent in the race and he said he's seeking another four-year term because he can help strike the delicate balance between preserving the city's heritage and small town charm, while fostering growth and development. He lists the city's priorities as continued commercial development surrounding Station Park, growth with a manageable flow of traffic, plus preservation of the city's historic downtown.
Steele is making his first bid for office. The 38-year-old attorney says Farmington is at a cross roads and needs thoughtful planning and smart development to preserve its unique character.
The BYU law grad opposes the West Davis Corridor. He says it will only result in more noise and air pollution, will harm wetlands and wildlife and ignores the investment already made in mass transition.
Dutson is seeking a return to office after stepping aside for two years, following eight years of service. The construction company owner says the city needs a large park to include sports fields and trails. He said it's time to put a sports facility in place in the community, a plan that has recently been discussed by the council.
He also points to property north of Station Park as being critical as development plans come forward for that area. He says he would like to see an upscale office environment in the area.
Mellor is making his first bid for office. The 31-year-old economist for the Economic Development Corporation of Utah says successful development is a priority as the city moves forward. He doesn't think current plans for development north of Station Park make any sense, with discussion of a McDonald's north of Park Lane Village, with a drive thru that has some stirred some controversy.
"I don't have a problem with McDonalds nor parking lots, but I did have a problem with the fact that it didn't meet the highest and best use for that land by having a drive thru. The developer could put something that at location that is equally as successful as a McDonalds but still meet the use the ordinance was intended to protect," Mellor said.
Harbertson, 51, said she is running to give back to the community and continue the positive momentum sustained during her husband's administration. She vows to stand up to developers and to tackle the big issues head on. She has been serving as an advisor to the Farmington City Council.
Addressing the question of why people should vote for her, Harbertson answered in the third person.
"The citizens of Farmington deserve someone who will have their best interest in mind when facing tough issues. She has a great sense of humor and thinks outside the box," Harbertson said.
Anderson says he has a passion for Farmington and wants to preserve that local quality of life for future generations. He says the city can move forward with better land use management and planning.
"I share the concern that our city planning is headed in the wrong direction, especially with the West Davis Corridor, which is bad for Farmington, whether the freeway is on Shepherd Lane or Glovers Lane. As a city council member, I will preserve our future quality of life through better land use planning. I support a better alternative, the shared solution," Anderson said.
Anderson, 35, is a senior manager for JC Penny. He and his wife Katie are the parents of five children.