Greencastle City Council Candidate Questionnaires Wards 1-4

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Questions for City Council Wards 1-4

1. What professional experience do you have that is relevant to the office you seek and what specific skills do you possess that make you qualified for the position? (100 words)

2. What do you see as the most pressing problems neighborhoods face? What role can the City Council play to deal with them? (100 words)

First Ward

Adam Cohen -- Democrat

1. For the last seven years I have served as president of City Council. I have worked to bring millions of dollars of grants to this city, to solve neighborhood problems, and to find solutions. I am proud of my city. Before I joined council I gave of my time at Big Walnut Sports Park. I firmly believe that solutions, not confrontations, build a community, and I have practiced what I preach. My presidency of the council has been supported by my friends in both political parties.

2. While we need to continue to work on sidewalks and roads, we have to understand the actual dollar cost of those improvements. Furthermore, I believe we have to find ways to build neighborhood pride. City Council must ensure that we have a safe and fun community in which to live: that will encourage people to move and stay here. The Stellar grant led to First Fridays. Our parks continue to improve and expand. These events and improvements make our neighborhoods a better place.

Danny Mesecher -- Republican

1. For my entire professional career I have worked in retail. This requires the person to listen to the customer and then come up with a solution. Listening and bringing people together to solve a problem are two assets that I bring to the table.

2. Neighborhoods just want their concerns listened to and then dealt with fairly. City Councils play a big role in this in that they decide to spread the tax money around the city and not just one area.

Second Ward

Stacie Langdon -- Republican

1. I am currently the assistant branch manager for Old National Bank located in downtown Greencastle. With over 11 years of banking experience I have witnessed many changes in our economy and financial markets. I have seen our property values rise and fall and our interest rates flat line. I have seen small businesses thrive and others struggle and close their doors.

With a bachelor's degree in political science,10 years of experience as an employment consultant and over a decade of banking experience, I believe I can provide valuable input and insights to the City Council of Greencastle.

2. Our city and neighborhoods need to grow and expand. Along with supporting existing businesses, our future focus should be on attracting new people and businesses to the community by exploring ways to promote the benefits and attractions Greencastle has to offer. DePauw University provides state of the art concerts, galleries and lectures. We have miles of walking paths, low property taxes, thriving schools and a city which provides a safe environment. We need to get the word out -- Greencastle is a great place to visit, work and raise a family. This should be our focus going forward.

Brian Cox -- Democrat

1. While working on my family dairy farm tough decisions had to be made, the dairy was important to me, but I knew the right financial decision for my family was to sell the cows and rent the ground out. As an insurance agent I learned how to identify problems and find answers while keeping my client's budget in mind. As the executive director of the Greater Greencastle Chamber I have learned working together is the only way to succeed. While on the City Council we are going to have to make hard decisions, identify problems and answers while working together.

2. In my neighborhood we just had our annual pitch-in street party that was approved by the City Council. This event helps us get to know our neighbors. Knowing your neighbors helps us better relate to each other. We have to get back to caring about one another, and not just existing next to each other. We can make our neighborhoods better by meeting our neighbors, coordinating neighborhood watches, bringing problems to the City Council and yes, street parties. City Council can give us the platform for all of these things but it has to start with us.

Third Ward

Steve Fields -- Democrat

1. My first qualification to serve on the Greencastle City Council is that I am a resident of Greencastle and that is the most important qualification. But during a 40-year newspaper career, I have gathered information on everything from little league baseball to the development of a Main Street program. Listening to the residents of Greencastle is gathering information.

2. Every year sidewalks and street need to be replaced and paved. We have areas of Greencastle that need drainage problems repaired. Also, we need to slow drivers on Greencastle city streets.

Harold Barger -- Republican

No response

Fourth Ward

Tyler Wade -- Republican

1. The ability to listen and ask questions are the most important skills a candidate for City Council must possess. I fully admit I do not have all the answers for how we make the 4th Ward and the city better places to live. I can tell you that, as an admissions counselor at Wabash College, I know how to listen and ask questions. I also know how to sell. I would use these attributes to sell Greencastle to prospective residents and employers and listen to my constituents and community stakeholders to build a better tomorrow for all city residents.

2. The most pressing problems faced in our neighborhoods are poor and/or non-existent sidewalks, abandoned properties and drug use. We have to continue to be smart about resource allocation. I would like to invest more money in sidewalk construction and repair, particularly in the 4th Ward. I have worked tirelessly over the past year to identify blighted properties in our neighborhoods and worked with the City to clean them up. Finally, we continue to find evidence of opiate abuse in our community. We must continue to be tough on crime while finding ways to rehabilitate those who face addiction.

Tanis Monday -- Democrat

1. I have held several positions which have prepared me to serve on city council. As an Executive Director of local non-profits, I've learned to work with many people, groups and organizations. I've learned about the diversity of our community and understand that there are multiple facets to consider when looking at any issue. I serve on the Redevelopment Commission and have knowledge of the city projects that have been completed as well as the ones in process and that are planned. But most of all, by nature, I'm a people person and listen to others about community needs.

2. The real picture is that there are neighborhoods in our community that have severe drug problems and are poverty stricken. There are also neighborhoods in our community that have incredible assets and potential. City Council must look at the community as a whole and use city funds to most appropriately address the needs of our community across the board. Ensuring safety of our citizens, encouraging growth and development, fostering community pride and continuing to move Greencastle forward are key goals. Cooperation across parties, wards, socio-economic lines, and community and business affiliations is necessary to ensure success in reaching those goals.