Each week through the primary, The Breeze will ask the candidates for Cape Coral City Council an issue-related question. In the interest of fairness, each candidate is limited to the same amount of space, about 100 words, for their response. This week's question is: What attribute best qualifies you for Cape Coral City Council?
Mayor - PRIMARY
DANIEL (DAN) ASHBY
My business background is my biggest attribute. I have a proven track record in team building and accomplishing any task given. I have had experience with million dollar budgets and maximizing profit margins. To be able to accomplish these tasks you must have great communication and team building skills, so that each member of the team feels a part of accomplishing the goal. I have spent my life not in government or politics, but in the private sector. I will use those experiences to implement my 50 point plan and get Cape Coral moving forward!
ALAN (AJ) BOYD
I am the most qualified candidate currently running for Mayor. I offer 25 years of Community involvement and two FULL terms of being your City Councilman. I have a proven track record of being able to work with ALL members of council. I was the only Councilman in Cape Coral's history to be appointed, by my fellow councilmembers, to the Mayor Pro Tem position three years in a row. I understand city budgets and how the city departments operate. I know what works and what doesn't and right now we have NO "POSITIVE" relations with surrounding government entities and because of that, we all too often, do not receive the respect we deserve as the second largest city in the state of Florida. As your Mayor I WILL repair those relationships and get Cape Coral back on track. Cape pride!
DAVID P. CARR
I understand people, I understand systems, I understand government, and I understand the thing that others admit they do not. I was confronted that you don't need to be a nuclear rocket scientist to do this job, but it does helps. I understand so much it frustrates me, and that other citizens possibly don't or don't care. Instead of frustration I understand that if I am tolerant and compassionate, I have the opportunity to unite those who are also frustrated and those that may have been misled. I understand history and that good people when desperate do things out of necessity, and then convince themselves it is the right thing.
David P. Carr, For a Cape Coral! Vote on or before Sept. 10, 2013
VINCENT A. CUMMINGS
Being trained as a City Manager, with a Master of Public Administration Degree, I am uniquely qualified to serve. I exclusively understand theory and practice of municipal government. This allows me to be a well versed "check" to the city administration in the academic and practical sense. Our council-members create public law, delegate implementation of ordinances to the administration, and oversee the municipal government. My credentials make me a subject matter expert on policy governance and public management. They will allow me to both lead the City Council, and preside over the city government, with competence and confidence.
MARNI LIN SAWICKI
My ability to lead. With a Masters in Business Administration, over 18 years working in a corporate environment much of it in the executive ranks, at the height overseeing three marketing departments and a $50M+ budget I have what it takes to move our city forward. We have a real chance to change the future of our city. By enhancing our city's image, successfully managing our budget and improving our overall quality of life, we can be the city we've always wanted to be. I would be proud to serve as your next Mayor!
JOHN J. SULLIVAN (incumbent)
I have over 42 years in the private sector, most of which has been in managerial positions and have served as your Mayor for the past four years. During my tenure as Mayor, many millions of dollars of taxpayer money has been saved. I sponsored and created the local vendor preference ordinance. This ordinance gives our local businesses an advantage in acquiring contracts from the city. It creates local jobs. None of my opponents, except for one, have held a position in local government. Most elected officials make commitments they don't honor. I have a proven track record and am recognized for honoring my commitments. I never forget that I work for you. I will make the same commitments I made in 2009. I will not support new taxes, fees or assessments. I will work to create new jobs and new revenue streams rather than punish our taxpayers. If any more union affiliated candidates are elected, your cause will be lost. I need your vote on Sept. 10, to continue to fight for you the taxpayer.
District 1 - PRIMARY
JAMES (JIM) BURCH
Past experience on Council, owning and operating a business and leading a large engineering firm will facilitate the rest of the City's needs. Public and private experiences have allowed me great access to leaders locally, statewide and nationally and that serves our interests well. I have been able to listen and learn, and then assimilate that knowledge into combining business with government in an effective way. I have used my leadership abilities along with negotiating and communication abilities to make government run more like a business where possible but, just as importantly, knowing where government must adhere to different statutory regulations. I never make decisions that aren't researched thoroughly and I don't vote based on popularity polls. My decisions are based upon the facts and the greater good, not the political climate whether government or private. I can be counted on to move in a positive direction and to continue moving this great City forward.
STEVEN L. GOLUB
Of the four candidates in District 1, I offer the only alternative, to the same old Cape politics. My idea is that we revamp the political structure. The burden of taxes and expenses will not be put on our full-time residents. I have offered the ideas of Eminent Domain to establish a cash flow, hire people and have people contribute 12 months a year, having Snowbirds change their tags within 16 days of arrival, not issue discount Lee passes to out-of-state tags etc.
These ideas plus others will pour more money into the Cape without forcing expenses on us.
If people want a change I offer that to them.
DAVID R. HEADD
The two traits of which I am most proud and which I will bring to the council are truth and integrity. Although there are times I have been severely tested to follow an easier road, I have resisted and the final results were most gratifying. As successful consensus builder, I don't see how you can build a consensus without trust. I am not a fast talker nor an eloquent, glib speaker but when I say something, you can take it to the bank. It is very easy to say the right thing to get elected and you will notice that I am not endorsed by the firefighters or police union because I, in good conscience, cannot support the fire assessment tax. We had our tax almost double in 2009 under the administration from 2007 to 2009 and to pile on new taxes four years later is untenable.
GRAHAM MADISON MORRIS
The determination of what attribute best qualifies me to serve the City of Cape Coral as a council member is a determination that is best made by the voters, the people of this city.
District 4 - GENERAL ELECTION
CHRIS N. CHULAKES-LEETZ (incumbent)
The best attribute for my continued service as a Cape Coral City Council member is my experience/education. It is only with the passage of time that one can achieve these combined attributes. With two college degrees and forty years of working experience I bring a vast array of knowledge to the Council discussions and ultimately our Policy making decisions. Only time provides the experience and knowledge a Council Member must have to set policy as our City matures.
The greatest attribute that the residents and I are asking from District 4 is civility and respect from our council leaders. As the city's next representative that is what I'll work to achieve and believe is one my greatest strengths. I will pursue input from the residents of Cape Coral. Make informed decisions based on facts and the needs of our community. I will do this with integrity, honesty, and the assurance to the people that they will get the representation that they demand, while maintaining the civility that the citizens of Cape Coral call for.
District 6, General Election
KEVIN M. McGRAIL (incumbent)
I feel my strongest attribute to continue as your Councilman from District 6 is my extensive knowledge of the projects I have helped institute.The expansion of SR78, The North Cape neighborhood paving plan, the ground breaking of the new RV Resort and Sam's Club are all projects I have helped foster. The implementation of the North 2 area UEP, the expansion of Burnt Store Road, the streetlights at school bus stops and the construction of a filter marsh and freshwater retention reservoir are all in the planning stages. My ability to "get things done" will help bring those projects to fruition as well. My 24 years of residency has taught me about Cape Coral's past and has helped me vision its bright future. I want this City to be one we can all be proud to give to our children and grandchildren!
My greatest attribute is my positive, can-do, find-a-way-to-make-it-happen attitude and leadership skills. I check my ego at the door and am just as comfortable leading a team as working collaboratively within a team to reach consensus for the greater good the city. Politics and personal agendas do not belong in city government. My 22-year military career and 20 years of business management experience have taught me to listen first and use logic with common sense thinking and problem solving techniques. As an independent thinker, I will conduct research and thoroughly study every issue before me. I want to include our citizens more in our deliberations-and will always be respectful of others to restore decorum to the dais. I am not a slick politician. I am merely a citizen, like you, who wants the best for our city.
The Cape Coral City Council Primary Election is Tuesday, Sept. 10. The polls will be open citywide from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Cape Coral City Council races are non-partisan, citywide elections meaning registered voters can cast a ballot in each race, no matter party affiliation, no matter the district in which they live.
Early voting continues today, Sept. 6, and Saturday, Sept. 7 Sept. 3-7
Early voting locations:
* Lee County Elections Cape Coral Branch Office 1031 S.E. 9th Place, Suite 3 (behind the Lee County Government Center).
* Lee County Elections Main Office at the Constitutional Complex in Fort Myers at 2480 Thompson St., third floor.
* City of Cape Coral
Primary Election: Sept. 10
Voter Registration Book
closed: Aug. 12
Early voting Aug. 31, Sept. 3-7
* City of Cape Coral
General Election: Nov. 5
Voter Registration Book
closes: Oct. 7
Early voting Oct. 28-31, Nov. 1-2.