LAYTON — Layton, Davis County’s biggest city, will be getting a new leader.
Scott Freitag, appointed last year to serve as Layton mayor through 2019, is running for the Layton City Council. He replaced Bob Stevenson, the former mayor who left the post after winning election last year to the Davis County Commission.
Five candidates, including three current Layton City Council members, are running for the leadership post, and primary voting, which ends Aug. 13, will serve too whittle the list two the top two contenders. They will then face off on Nov. 5.
The candidates are Joyce Brown, Scott Williams, Joy Petro, Tricia Pilny and Bruce Davis. Following is more information on them, pulling from statements they submitted to the Utah Lt. Governor’s Office and other campaign materials.
Joyce Brown: Brown, finishing her fourth term on the Layton City Council, vows to listen and maintain an open-door policy. She cited her experience.
“Serving on the Layton City Council with four mayors, as their mayor pro tem, I have represented the city locally and on the state level. I now ask you for the opportunity to be your mayor,” she said.
More specifically, she singled out the import of “fostering Layton’s excellent relationship with Hill AFB,” which, she noted, is to add 4,000 to 5,000 jobs in coming years. Other priorities for Brown include assuring quality growth in housing and jobs, pursuing new recreational outlets, improving infrastructure and maintaining financing stability.
Scott Williams: Williams, retired from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, called himself a “fiscal conservative.” He “strongly opposes” the city of Layton’s proposed property tax increase for 2020, meant to raise funds to build and run a new fire department.
Williams “understands that government does not create wealth or jobs, but that it can facilitate such through appropriate investment in infrastructure and keeping taxes low,” his statement reads. “Scott also understands the importance of having a strong, diverse tax base and supports the Layton Forward initiative. He believes that growth should pay for growth.”
Layton Forward is a proposed update to the city’s general plan, which guides growth in the city.
Joy Petro: Petro, in her second term on the Layton City Council, cited her business background, more than 30 years in the private sector. “Her business background gives her expertise in planning, budgeting and negotiation,” reads her statement.
She favors finalizing the city’s general plan, building the proposed new fire station, increased recruitment of police officers and “responsible development” through use of existing buildings.
She noted her involvement in many charitable groups and organizations, including the Layton Heritage Museum, and put a big focus on her ties to Layton. “Joy Petro is a lifelong resident who believes that it is important to preserve Layton’s rich and diverse heritage while balancing the future needs of the community,” said her statement.
Tricia Pilny: Pilny, who’s worked in construction and consulting, cited her efforts working with firms considering moving to Utah and local firms looking to grow. She “has extensive experience in business development, marketing and multi-project management with a regional and national focus,” she said.
While acknowledging the need for a new fire station, she’s opposed to “any new tax increase,” she said, and charged there “has not been a great deal of transparency” from leaders in funding the facility. “Cities all over the country pay for public service buildings and pay for it without raising taxes. Has the city looked at other options?” she said.
Making government more open and accessible to the public, in part through live streaming of government meetings, is also a big issue for Pilny.
He favors “safe, clean and vibrant neighborhoods,” he said, as well as construction of the proposed new fire station. He would like to see the update of the city’s general plan completed soon and, more generally, “smart, sensible and balanced planning and zoning” in the city.
He’d like to take a closer look at the future of the city’s Surf ‘n Swim swimming facility “and explore opportunities and possible partnerships to better fill this need in the future,” he said.
Davis had a long career in the corporate world before his work as an instructor and now administrator for Weber State.