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Voters’ Guide: River Heights council candidates state positions

October 29th, 2009 Posted in Opinion

By Catherine Meidell

RIVER HEIGHTS–Two seats on the River Heights City Council will be filled once the general elections take place Nov. 3. Council members Douglas Clausen and Kathryn Hadfield’s terms on the council have come to an end and both will be running again to keep their current positions. They will be defending their seats against Richard Okelberry and Skyler Tidwell, both first-time council candidates.

Kathryn Hadfield, an incumbent, works part-time for her husband’s business and has been directing the 7- and 8-year-old children in the Cache Children’s Choir for five years. She would like more time on the council to finish organizing and writing an emergency plan for the city that she has already started compiling, she said. Her plan includes emergency management training for officials and employees as well as coordinating with block captains the LDS Church has set in place.

“In the past, people have felt that the council has not responded or listened to their concerns and so hopefully we can do a better job of that,” Hadfield said.

She said she would like to see the community more involved in city relations. Hadfield will work toward a better library system the River Heights residents can utilize. Currently, residents must pay $100 for a Logan library card. Also, River Heights is on a “tight budget,” so she aims to develop commercial property that will bring in tax revenue for the community’s needs.

The second incumbent running is Douglas Clausen, vice president of purchasing at ICON health and fitness. Clausen would also like to be a part in finishing projects the council has started since he has served as a council member.

“I want to make that the city takes the right approach on resurfacing roads and I want to investigate the possibility of a River Heights cemetery,” Clausen said.

He said he will find it important to keep River Heights away from spending more money than their budget will allow.

Retired disabled veteran and father Richard Okelberry said his first order of business as a member of the city council will be re-establishing a city Web site. Okelberry believes River Heights is in need of a public meeting place because it is a small city, and a Web site will cure the disconnect between the government and residents.

“One of the biggest problems of living in River Heights is feeling railroaded by the council,” Okelberry said. “They don’t hear what’s going on. I have felt apathy from the council and the mayor and I’m hoping to change some of that.”

Okelberry currently does work in graphic designing and publishes Web sites especially for political commentary, he said. He plans to establish a nonprofit foundation in order to raise money for various projects that need to be done in River Heights and organize volunteers to support it.

Skyler Tidwell, an 18-year-old USU student and River Heights native, will also compete for one of the two seats for city council that is up for grabs.

“I’ve portrayed myself as a candidate who will be one that won’t act on my own impulses. I will make my spot on the council’s purpose to listen to the people, I’m not there for my own personal interest,” Tidwell said.

He said he believes River Heights is thriving, however, he sees a problem with the way water lines and roadway are repaired. Rather than continously patching the damages, Tidwell said he wants to see “things done right the first time.” He said he realizes funds are minimal, but he will do the best he can to fix that.

“It’s tough being as young as I am, I’m not as quick on my feet but I’ll learn eventually.”

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  1. One Response to “Voters’ Guide: River Heights council candidates state positions”

  2. By Richard Okelberry on Oct 30, 2009

    Thank you so much Catherine for reporting so often on River Heights politics. Unfortunately we here in River Heights often get over looked by other news outlets. I personally had read some of your work from searching the web on various topics but did not realize how comprehensive your work is. I will certainly be pointing neighbors and friends to your work so that they may stay more informed on the issues. Also, it wouldn’t be a bad idea for the new city site to have a permanent link to this section, so that people can be sure to hear some independent reporting. Thanks again!

    – Rich Okelberry

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