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West Haven council contenders focus on development, unity, spending

By Tim Vandenack - | Nov 17, 2023

Dixon, Hilton, Kelley and Call photos supplied; Morse and McGregor photos, Standard-Examiner

Six candidates are running for three seats on the West Haven City Council. They are, clockwise from top left, Sharon Hilton, Carrie Call, Nina Morse, Jim McGregor, Clarence Kelley and Kim Dixon. Voting culminates Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2023.

WEST HAVEN — The six hopefuls for three at-large spots on the West Haven City Council variously put a focus on checking out-of-control development, fiscal responsibility, unifying the community and more.

Vying are incumbents Nina Morse, Kim Dixon and Carrie Call as well as Sharon Hilton, Jim McGregor and Clarence Kelley. Mail-in balloting is underway and culminates next Tuesday, with the top three vote-getters winning council seats.

West Haven sits in western Weber County and is one of the fastest-growing cities in the state. Here’s a look at the six hopefuls, pulling largely from their public bios posted to the Utah Lieutenant Governor’s Office website:

Sharon Hilton: Hilton, the daughter of a farmer, is a retired U.S. Postal Service rural mail carrier who says she’s long worked with the public.

“With a deep-rooted passion for public service and an unwavering dedication to the well-being of our communities, I aim to bring a fresh perspective and innovative approach to the realm of politics, driven by the belief that collaboration and dialogue are the cornerstones of effective leadership,” she said.

Uniting people, building bridges and forging partnerships are part of her vision.

“My focus is including and engaging our seniors and the next generation of young people looking towards their futures and addressing their issues. Together let us embark on a transformative journey towards a brighter and more equitable future,” she said.

Carrie Call: Call, a homemaker, is vying for her second term. She touted efforts during her first term to get a handle on growth, which spurred her initial bid.

“During my term on the council, we have updated our general plan map several times,” she wrote in her bio, referencing the document that guides development in the city. “We amended our zoning ordinances to increase lot sizes. We have held developers accountable. I am proud to have been part of that! Yes, development continues to happen, but now it is well thought out, planned and monitored. The growth has slowed.”

She cited her responsiveness when issues have been brought to her attention. “During my term, I have had countless opportunities to help residents individually and collectively,” she said.

Clarence Kelley: Kelley, an aerospace engineer, touted his work ethic, learned at home, school and through sports.

“I worked to put myself through college before starting my 28-year career in the aerospace industry. I am a lead engineer for Lockheed Martin, where I lead a team responsible for multi-million dollar engineering modifications,” he said.

He puts a focus on fiscal responsibility and building unity.

“I have avoided personal debt, made smart investments and differentiated between wants and needs. I believe in responsible growth and spending,” he said. “I will listen and work to understand your concerns before making decisions. I want to bridge gaps and build unity.”

Kim Dixon: Dixon, a retiree, cited City Council efforts during her first term in office “to maintain our country feel” while still welcoming newcomers to West Haven. She puts a focus on managing growth.

“Growth is inevitable and managing it begins with zoning. As we ensure our zoning reflects our desires, we can make sure that we grow in the way best for West Haven,” she said.

She also touted other city accomplishments during her first term, including partnering with Weber School District to share gym space at Mountain View Junior High, now taking shape in the city. That will allow the city’s recreation program to grow, she said, without having to build a city structure.

Dixon also noted the new contract the city reached for collection of trash in the city, which she said saves residents money, and municipal leaders’ focus on creating “first-rate city events” for the public, like West Haven Days.

Nina Morse: Morse, who works in communications for an aerospace and defense company, puts a focus on “fiscal responsibility” and the “country” lifestyle in the city.

“My top priorities include improving our city’s budget, promoting country living and ensuring public safety,” she said on her campaign website.

She aims to keep the city’s spending plan “responsible and transparent” while balancing development. “I will work hard to continue to preserve our open spaces and natural resources, while also promoting economic development that supports our local farmers and businesses,” she said.

Public safety is also big for Morse. She will keep advocating for increased policing, she said, and maintaining “the great relationship” the city has with the Weber County Sheriff’s Office, which provides protection in the city.

Jim McGregor: McGregor, an information technology director, touted his service with the Utah Army National Guard.

He served the national guard for 12 years, handling field artillery functions, and completed a combat deployment to Iraq in 2005. “My service earned me the rank of staff sergeant and multiple awards for excellence,” he said.

He got into the race to make sure voters had a choice of candidates. “Without at least three challengers in 2024, an incumbent council member would secure reelection by default. My candidacy ensures a contested election, and I believe I’m a strong candidate,” he said.

He’s also a proponent of civic engagement. “In democracy, citizens shouldn’t just spectate; they must participate,” he said.


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