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Election for Fayetteville Mayor

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Since the other topic seemed to focus more on a national level and I wanted to talk about something rather local I thought I'd get another topic going. Especially since the other NWA forumers outside of Fayetteville may have no interest in this. Some candidates are now officially entering the race. First was Walt Eilers made it official. Then Lioneld Jordan said he would as well although he hasn't made an official announcement. Eilers is a fundraising consultant while Jordan is an Alderman for Ward 4 and also basically serves as the city's Vice Mayor. Dan Coody still hasn't announced whether he will run again or not. He's said he will make that decision in the next few weeks. It sounds like basically no one is wanting to run against Coody but some have decided to go ahead. Some apparently don't think Coody will run again. Another possible candidate is Jeff Koenig. But he apparently is still waiting for Coody to announce his intentions. Since Eilers has officially announced he has said he wants to continue on what Coody has done.

Anyway I was curious to see what everyone has to say about the candidates. Does anyone have any early opinions? I was also curious to see what people thought of Coody. I haven't recalled anyone making any negative comments about him on the forum. But that doesn't necessarily mean that everyone on here likes him.

Personally I've been happy with Dan Coody. I'd like to see him run again. But if he doesn't run then I'd probably lean to whatever candidate would probably follow his path.

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Posted

Since the other topic seemed to focus more on a national level and I wanted to talk about something rather local I thought I'd get another topic going. Especially since the other NWA forumers outside of Fayetteville may have no interest in this. Some candidates are now officially entering the race. First was Walt Eilers made it official. Then Lioneld Jordan said he would as well although he hasn't made an official announcement. Eilers is a fundraising consultant while Jordan is an Alderman for Ward 4 and also basically serves as the city's Vice Mayor. Dan Coody still hasn't announced whether he will run again or not. He's said he will make that decision in the next few weeks. It sounds like basically no one is wanting to run against Coody but some have decided to go ahead. Some apparently don't think Coody will run again. Another possible candidate is Jeff Koenig. But he apparently is still waiting for Coody to announce his intentions. Since Eilers has officially announced he has said he wants to continue on what Coody has done.

Anyway I was curious to see what everyone has to say about the candidates. Does anyone have any early opinions? I was also curious to see what people thought of Coody. I haven't recalled anyone making any negative comments about him on the forum. But that doesn't necessarily mean that everyone on here likes him.

Personally I've been happy with Dan Coody. I'd like to see him run again. But if he doesn't run then I'd probably lean to whatever candidate would probably follow his path.

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Posted

I will admit that before Coody was elected I thought he was a bit of a wacko (said with all due respect). Even afterwards, he has had some ideas that were a little far out but I think he has done a good job. He has been able to steer a middle path between the anti- and pro-development factions. He is environmentally aware but has helped push development forward. I would vote for him if he ran again.

As for the others, I also don't know that much about them at this point, except that I think Jordan is maybe a bit too much against development if I remember right. If Eilers can indeed follow Coody's example and balance restraint with sound development I would certainly consider him.

Thanks for starting this topic, Mith, the other is getting a little too strident for me. I also am more interested in the local races as I think they affect my day to day life more. In my everyday life I find it amazing how many people have no idea what their local governments are doing but can go at length about the national political scene.

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Posted

I will admit that before Coody was elected I thought he was a bit of a wacko (said with all due respect). Even afterwards, he has had some ideas that were a little far out but I think he has done a good job. He has been able to steer a middle path between the anti- and pro-development factions. He is environmentally aware but has helped push development forward. I would vote for him if he ran again.

As for the others, I also don't know that much about them at this point, except that I think Jordan is maybe a bit too much against development if I remember right. If Eilers can indeed follow Coody's example and balance restraint with sound development I would certainly consider him.

Thanks for starting this topic, Mith, the other is getting a little too strident for me. I also am more interested in the local races as I think they affect my day to day life more. In my everyday life I find it amazing how many people have no idea what their local governments are doing but can go at length about the national political scene.

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Posted

To add to my earlier post; I think I would support any candidate for mayor that would commit to doing whatever is necessary to keeping the Walton Arts Center's main venue in Fayetteville. I think that should be the the number one priority in the next election as it is of utmost importance to the economic health of the Dickson Street and downtown areas. It is those areas along with the University of Arkansas that define Fayetteville. If the most important cultural asset in town is allowed to migrate away it will have as of a long term negative effect on those areas as the positive effect it has had since it came to the area.

As more of Fayetteville's position as the retail center of Northwest Arkansas is siphoned away to the north the importance of the entertainment district is going to grow. If the Walton Arts Center's main venue moves away the majority of the events that take place there will move with the new venue. The present site on Dickson Street will be a second rate theater and the Dickson Street entertainment district will become known as primarily a bar and restaurant area.

When communities are rated on their cultural attractions they are not rated on how many bars or nightclubs they have. Cultural attractions are venues where plays, traveling Broadway shows and symphonies play. It's where future attractions like galleries, museums and other performance venues will look to locate. If the main performance venue in Northwest Arkansas moves elsewhere it's new location will be touted as the new cultural center of the area to the detriment of the current location.

Finding a way to keep WAC's main venue on Dickson Street is the number one issue facing the next mayor and other city leaders. Fayetteville won't fade away overnight if it moves and the city will continue to grow but it's image as the number one place to live in Northwest Arkansas will decline. If you take a drive up I540 you can see the growth that is taking place. That growth benefits the area as a whole but Fayetteville has a chance to keep it's standing as a special place by keeping it's place as the cultural center of NWA.

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Posted

I think Koenig would be a good candidate, but that's going on memory after reading his qualifications one day. I think Coody is a very mature guy for the job and does a great job managing his staff and tasks (better than most could). I think the voting naysayers will probably continue to cry about the sewer plant debacle. I think I even heard from someone working on the sewer plant project on here saying he did wrong, but I doubt that person's access to the inside information and I've heard from Coody himself rebuking a council member for taking a potshot at him in public without giving all the information. I think Coody probably shouldn't run because I'm tired of seeing a good, qualified guy get beat up by "congress". In other words, city council has not helped him achieve some good goals because they're more antidevelopment, or anti-progressive.

In saying that, I think Jordan would not be a good candidate. He is definitely anti-development, but I think his disqualification is his lack of poise and maturity. I think his main qualification (in his mind) is that he is kind of the lead representative of the anti-development constituency of the council. His main demographic target would be "old Fayetteville" citizens and the "green" voters who are conservative.

I think zman is right on about WAC's location as a potential hot topic. I hate to see us (Fayetteville) as a competitor with neighboring towns, and having our agenda become something about getting a revenue base. I think it is shallow for us and the city to seek improvement through tax dollars and worry about the bottom line. If we've spread our city out too much beyond our government's ability to finance and maintain its infrastructure, that's just the way it is and we have to live with it. We are still lucky, and will be better off than cities like some in the rust belt or in the south like Pine Bluff.

Back to the WAC, I think it is something that makes obvious sense here. We have the niche of arts and cultural entertainment district. We should make improvements to it, and if Benton County would want a larger facility that's up to them to build their own. I think we have enough natural community support and interest to keep some thing here vibrant or doing well, and WAC is one of them.

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Posted

I like Coody. He hasn't always been effective--he may be too nice of a guy. I hope he runs but don't think he will again. I think he could get beat due to the sewer project overruns and the big hole we have off the square....

Mark

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Posted

I'm fine with Coody again, he's been pretty good overall. I don't know of anyone specific (that's interested in the job) that I'd want to vote for right now.

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Posted

Yeah it might be a bit early to talk about the mayor race. We won't find out more about the candidates till later. I'm curious to see how the candidates will try to separate themselves from each other.

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Posted

I think Jordan is already on the campaign trail. He provided a lot of quotes for the nwanews article It's Getting Personnel. The article was about some job cuts that are associated with the budget balancing.

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Posted

Looks like Mayor Coody has made it official- he won't be running for reelection in 2008. I think he will be leaving city government in better shape than it was when he was first elected. He did mention that he might some day run for city council and would stay involved in city affairs.

As for Jordan- sounds like he is trying to drum up support among city workers for sure. I think he's taking the wrong approach though. The city should be run more like a business- having a "sacred cow" priority that doesn't take into account business needs is a way to fail. No one should be considered inexpendable.

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Posted

Looks like Mayor Coody has made it official- he won't be running for reelection in 2008. I think he will be leaving city government in better shape than it was when he was first elected. He did mention that he might some day run for city council and would stay involved in city affairs.

As for Jordan- sounds like he is trying to drum up support among city workers for sure. I think he's taking the wrong approach though. The city should be run more like a business- having a "sacred cow" priority that doesn't take into account business needs is a way to fail. No one should be considered inexpendable.

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Posted

Yeah I heard about that. Guess we'll have to see who else might throw their name in now. I'd still need to find out more about the candidates but from what I've heard of Jordan so far, I doubt I'd vote for him.

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Posted

Looks like Mayor Coody has made it official- he won't be running for reelection in 2008. I think he will be leaving city government in better shape than it was when he was first elected. He did mention that he might some day run for city council and would stay involved in city affairs.

As for Jordan- sounds like he is trying to drum up support among city workers for sure. I think he's taking the wrong approach though. The city should be run more like a business- having a "sacred cow" priority that doesn't take into account business needs is a way to fail. No one should be considered inexpendable.

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Posted

While I wouldn't mind seeing Coody run again, I can't blame him for wanting some time off. Sounds like he wouldn't mind still being somewhat involved with the city in some fashion in the near future.

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Posted

While I wouldn't mind seeing Coody run again, I can't blame him for wanting some time off. Sounds like he wouldn't mind still being somewhat involved with the city in some fashion in the near future.

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Posted

Jeff Koenig had his offical announcement for Fayetteville Mayor yesterday afternoon. So there are 2 choices thus far in the mayoral race. I believe that this is the candidate I am going to support for now. I need to see exactly where he stands on some issues but so far he is my choice for mayor.

Here is his website: Koenig Site

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Posted

Yeah I read about that in the Northwest Arkansas Times today. Some of his stances are; no taxes unless approved by voters. He opposes road impact fees (unlike Jordan). He sorta blasted the city for seeing the revenue shorting coming and not 'doing anything' about it till now. he does want to continue to work on the environmental sustainability and create a 'green valley'.

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Posted

Koenig is an example of pure, unmediated Babbitry.

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For those inquiring minds.....

From Wikipedia: Babbitry- a now rare epithet derived from the Sinclair Lewis book of the same name, loosely defined as an uncultured "square", a typically middle-aged and middle-class businessman characterized by the timidity and ignorance of their philistinism

From Dictionary.com: philistine- 1. (sometimes initial capital letter) a person who is lacking in or hostile or smugly indifferent to cultural values, intellectual pursuits, aesthetic refinement, etc., or is contentedly commonplace in ideas and tastes.

I take it aerotive doesn't think much of Koenig's candidancy.

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For those inquiring minds.....

From Wikipedia: Babbitry- a now rare epithet derived from the Sinclair Lewis book of the same name, loosely defined as an uncultured "square", a typically middle-aged and middle-class businessman characterized by the timidity and ignorance of their philistinism

From Dictionary.com: philistine- 1. (sometimes initial capital letter) a person who is lacking in or hostile or smugly indifferent to cultural values, intellectual pursuits, aesthetic refinement, etc., or is contentedly commonplace in ideas and tastes.

I take it aerotive doesn't think much of Koenig's candidancy.

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Posted

Sounds like Koenig is my man, then. He's kind of pressing against the current issues and how they were handled too much though. That's easy fodder.

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Posted

I haven't updated this in a while. First of all Koenig is dropping out of the race because of health problems. This was news a while back ago but the old Arkansas Attorney General, Steve Clark, is running for mayor. That really makes things weird because he actually had to leave office and was convicted for using a state credit card for his own purposes. But apparently he was later pardoned by Huckabee so that lets him run for office. I also don't think Clark has lived here for very long so I really have a hard time imagining him doing very well in the election.

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Posted

With Koenig dropping out I guess Eilers is the favorite now. He has been active around town in public meetings. To me he is a much better choice than Jordan. Clark's candidacy seems like a attempt by someone who is trying to rehabilitate their image and not a serious bid to be mayor. There is some young man who entered the race but I can't quite seem to remember his name- his candidacy might also be a non-serious attempt and is just to get his political feet wet.

Who knows- some dark horse candidate might be looking at entering the race.

Of course- if Coody would change his mind and run for re-election I would vote for him.

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Posted

Latest news in the race for Fayetteville mayor is that Bill Ramsey of the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce is considering a campaign. I imagine he would have some of the same ideas that Koenig did since they are both associated with the Chamber.

Even bigger news is that Mayor Dan Coody may be reconsidering his decision to not run again. While he hasn't confirmed this it sounds like he is concerned that the city may shift to a less balanced approach to city government. I think his middle of the road approach has been very benefical to the city. I believe he more atune to the challenges that Fayetteville is facing and has the experience to meet them.

It should be an interesting election season for Fayetteville city politics.

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