RIVERDALE -- With one of the only municipal elections in the Top of Utah to be conducted entirely by mail-in ballot, Riverdale residents will be choosing a new mayor and two new city councilmen.
City officials planned to have ballots in the mail in early October and could have arrived in residents' mailboxes as early as today.
The mayoral candidates are Norm Searle and Alan Arnold, while the city council candidates are Brent Ellis, Gary E. Griffiths, Cody Hansen and Steve Hilton.
Arnold, who has served on the city council for the last four years, said the biggest issue facing the city is not the many recent personnel changes.
"The biggest issue for the mayor is vision concerning city operation, customer service, city finances, and the defining of our community," said Arnold, who has been a business owner for many years. "If elected, I would want a more involved and informed city council, to maintain high standards in all that the city does, eliminate nepotism, and treat our residents, businesses and visitors with the excellent customer service they deserve."
Arnold's formal education includes degrees in business, health administration and customer service.
Searle, another current city councilman, said he has the time, drive and experience to deal with the city's challenges.
"Riverdale's future looks bright, but challenges will arise. While campaigning, I find the vast majority of residents think Riverdale is a great community to live in. I have lived in Riverdale for the past 45 years and love the community spirit and 'can do' attitude. I believe that I have strong support from a majority of residents and community leaders. Together, we can work to make Riverdale an even greater community to live in and be proud of," Searle said.
Ellis, a life-long resident of Riverdale, said he has a strong commitment to serve the community where his family, children and grandchildren now live. He has experience with civic organizations in Riverdale and is currently serving as the planning commission chairman.
"Riverdale faces many challenges with the change of leadership in city government, Riverdale Road construction and vacant buildings," he said. "We need people who have experience and a good working knowledge of the community to address these issues and work to keep Riverdale a great place to live."
Griffiths, a 19-year Riverdale resident, served on the city council before, four years ago. He said the biggest issues facing the city are infrastructure and public works issues such as snow removal.
"The way we plow our sidewalks and driveways after they have been shoveled makes it hard on our citizenry to get out of their homes," said Griffiths, a former Salt Lake City compliance manager. "With the property training and equipment we can avoid that."
Hansen is a 30-year resident of Riverdale.
"My deep-seeded pride and loyalty to the well-being of our community is genuine and very sincere. I just want to help serve Riverdale," Hansen said. "Following city business closely for years now, with great insight, prompted me to run; realizing the importance of the upcoming leadership succession being my main motivation."
Steve Hilton claims 34 years experience at America First Credit Union, gaining experience in finance, management, budgeting, technology, contracts, and negotiations.
"I listen to all viewpoints before making up my mind, and I am known for finding ways to unite people and reach goals," Hilton said. "I believe I can use these abilities to help Riverdale be great in the next four years."