Letter: Forum helpful in rating candidates (Oct. 26, 2022)


I attended the forum for the City Council candidates at the council chambers on Oct 18 and would like to thank you for sponsoring the meeting and making it possible.

Although I am well aware that yesterday’s home runs don’t win tomorrow’s ball games, I feel my 20-plus years of involvement with all levels of city government gives me at least an educated guess at the potential and/or qualifications of the candidates.

My thoughts are as follows:

Greg Mahler and Susan Coleman, two of the incumbents, have done a good job and should be returned. Their work on securing funding for a new waste water plant and the work that is yet to be done in that area needs their continued commitment. I would also point out they have been diligent in efforts to secure additional medical facilities for our community.

David Lowman and Josh Thorstad are individuals I don’t know a lot about but will offer my observations.

David has had the initiative to work on the Budget Committee, Planning Commission and to work on the Charter Review committee.

Although I don’t agree with several of his ideas, I am giving him the benefit of the doubt and it is my hope that as he works more with the budget that he will get a better understanding of how the facets of city government need to work together to make it work.

Josh is another that I saw and listened to for the first time at the meeting but at least admitted in the question and answer session that he didn’t know a lot about the process but was willing to work and learn. He has worked one year on the Budget Committee and, as I understand, has been attending meetings to acquaint himself with the process. For this reason I would give him a vote but caution him to leave his politics at the door. The council is, and has always been, nonpartisan and should remain that way.

That brings us to the final incumbent, Dylan Richards, who has been on the council for a two-year term and is running for re-election. Although all candidates were told at the beginning of the session that the affair was nonpartisan, he was the only candidate to continually bring politics into his comments, dissing Biden, quoting Bush and in general pandering to the crowd as I have never seen before. 

My one regret is that I didn’t go up to him after the session and let him know what I thought of his performance. In all my years in working on behalf of the city, I was never asked nor did I feel the need to talk about my political affiliation. The Council is a non-partisan body and working for the betterment of the city is its only obligation. For this reason I cannot support Mr. Richards.

In closing, I would say these thoughts are my own and would like to thank the people running and hope their commitments are in the right place.

Good luck to our new city manager; she seems like a very nice lady and should do well for our city.

Dave Holley

Sweet Home