Three candidates vying for two city council seats spoke at Tuesday evening’s candidates’ forum. Incumbents Terry Haines and John Whiddon were joined by challenger Charlie Davidson. Also participating was Pat Branson who is running unopposed to fill a seat made vacant by this summer’s resignation of City Councilman Paul Smith. KMXT’s Jacob Resneck reports.
(city council) 4:39 "One of the most … October 5th. I’m Jacob Resneck."
One of the most controversial topics was local ballot Proposition 1 which would allow city employees to vote whether to unionize.
Challenger Charlie Davidson gave the initiative his full support saying the power of workers to unionize is a fundamental right.
Branson noted that last year’s referendum on the same issue was defeated by a razor-thin margin. And she criticized the sitting council for its public anti-proposition campaign.
Incumbent city councilmen Haines and Whiddons said they were sympathetic with city employees who need better procedures for handling their grievances. But they said they won’t be voting for Proposition 1. Here’s Haines first.
Moderator Bill Oliver then challenged the candidates to defend the city’s current tax structure, noting that the city has about $11 million in reserves this year yet will be collecting about $9.4 million in sales and property taxes.
City councilmen Haines and Whiddon defended the city’s tax code.
haines2 / whiddon2
Challengers Davidson and Branson also defended the wisdom of the city holding reserves.
davidson2 / branson2
The full 48-minute segment from Tuesday’s candidate forum available at KMXT dot org. Election Day is October 5th.