The Nacilbupera Guzzle

Whoever examines with attention the history of the dearths and famines … will find, I believe, that a dearth never has arisen from any combination among the inland dealers in corn, nor from any other cause but a real scarcity, occasioned sometimes perhaps, and in some particular places, by the waste of war, but in by far the greatest number of cases by the fault of the seasons; and that a famine has never arisen from any other cause but the violence of government attempting, by improper means, to remedy the inconveniences of a dearth. (Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations IV.5.44)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Upcoming New Face of the Provo City Council

Top Row L to R:  Kay Van Buren (Dist 4), Yancee Hardy (Citywide), Jim Pettersson (Dist 4)
Middle:  Gary Winterton (Dist 1), Howard Stone (Dist 4)
Bottom:  Bonnie Morrow (Dist 1), Gary Garrett (Citywide), Lindsay Wiblin (Dist 4)
Note:  Six Candidates for District 3 not pictured; Collage arranged in artistic manner not to favor any candidate
Friday marked the end day of filing season for four Provo City Council seat vacancies from a total of seven council seats including Districts 1, 3, 4, and a citywide seat.  We had a remarkable number of filings despite the recent stiffening of filing requirements by the current council.  Perhaps the remarkable number was due to all four council incumbents up for reelection chose not to run again.  Whatever the case may be, because the outcome of the Nov 8th elections will determine a majority of council seats, there is perhaps not better time than to get involved with city elections.  (See official Candidate List)
  • District 1 voters will choose between Bonnie Morrow and Gary Winterton on November 8.
  • District 3 voters will have a primary on Sept 13 to chose from the list of six candidates:
Tom Jarman
James E. Kallbacka
Jeff Marvell
Hal Miller
Glen K. Thurston
Richard E. Wood
  • District 4 voters will have a primary on Sept 13 to chose from the list of four candidates:
Jim Pettersson
Howard Stone
Kay Van Buren
Lindsay Wiblin
  • All voters will vote on Nov 8 between the two citywide candidates, Yancee Hardy and Gary Garrett.  (Note:  Find which district you're in on the Provo District Map)
In looking at the group as a whole, it is going to be an exciting election.  Some of the candidates have run before, while others are first-time-ever candidates for office.  I really appreciate the willingness of all the candidates to step forward and to provide us with differing options for change as we try and promote liberty among our citizenry.  I also salute the lame duck members of the council for their service with one final plea:  do not raise our property taxes up to 16% as you are now considering (Daily Herald, Jun 16) in contradiction to Mayor Curtis' proposed budget.
Many Provoans are finding themselves frustrated with their city government on a plethora of issues ranging from attempts to impose a daytime curfew, incessant tax hikes and fee increases, backyard pavement regulations, and building unnecessary roads and bridges on the west side. Yesterday, I sent out the following questionnaire to my District 4 candidates to find out where they stood on these many issues.  I expect to have a similar one developed shortly for city-wide candidates.  The questions cover a number of different hot-button topics.  There is also a movement within our district to get a forum scheduled for the candidates before the primary to increase voter awareness of the candidates.  Here is the questionnaire:
Did you support Prop 1 (Rec. Center bond)?

Do you support Opt-In or Opt-Out for curbside recycling?

Do you support the implementation of a RAP tax?

Should city property tax be eliminated, lowered, held, or raised?

Do you support the building of the Northwest Connector?

Do you support the council’s recent changes to campaign filing requirements?

Do you believe that a council member should resign if called to active military duty?

Do you support the current ticket policy whereby a fine doubles in 6 days and triples in 11?

What ideas will you bring to balancing the budget?

What has been your political party affiliation(s) for the past 10 years?

What future projects should the city fund?

Do you support tax increases and bond issuances being subject to a 2/3rds supermajority of voters?

What are your ideas for increasing revenue through growing the sales tax base?

What percentage of a backyard should a landowner be allowed to pave?

Do you support a daytime curfew for minors?

Do you support the redistricting of the city as to eliminate city-wide council positions?

Do you support the creation of a third interstate interchange for Provo?


Dave Knecht said...

I like a lot of your questions. They are relevant.
Here is some suggestions.
Clarify whether you mean 2/3 suppermajority of registered voters, or of those few that actually vote.
As for paving the backyard, yes one could just ask how much should be paved for parking, but you are not asking about the other part of the equation. This new ordinance does not require one living thing in the back yard, it can all be hard surface. Plus a business next to a home would have to fence/landscape 4 or more parking spaces to minimize the impact on the residence - however - you could put 4 or more in the backyard of a residence and not have to do anything to lower the impact on the next door residence.
Not consistent.
Why ask about party affiliation in a non-partisan race???
Are not all the other questions what we really care about?
If Party is an issue, then what about the Tea party?
Should immigration be a question?
HB 116?
If Party matters in a non-partisan race, does religion also matter?
And last but not least, Will you strive to find out the will of the people, the majority, or will you simply vote according to your own beleifs? If the answer is the latter, then we better ask a bunch more question, since we will only get one chance to be heard every 4 years.
Just food for thought.
Thanks, Dave Knecht

Nacilbupera said...


Excellent feedback. I meant 2/3rds of whomever shows up to vote; I think that is the standard in most states that have supermajorities. Probably should have clarified that but the candidates are free to elaborate on their responses.

You're absolutely right about the paving issues. The question I posed is simply a starter question on where people are.

Party is important because parties have a platform of principles. By knowing one's party you can better acertain how they approach the issues. By contrast the Tea Party has no formal platform or membership making it difficult to draw out political philosophy. Besides, you can't avoid the party question, it's going to come out sooner or later as it always does, so let's just get it off the table first so we can focus on the meat and potatoes.

I don't think religion matters a lot to voters; still its fair game and if someone were an occultist I'm sure the voters would want to know.

HB116: Huge, but not quite as relevant to city discussions as say HB477 might be. Still, you're right it would be a great indication of political philosophy and immigration was an electorial issue during the mayoral race.

Your last question is complex. I think a lot of times pols have certain core beliefs and principles that they won't deviate from irregardless of issue popularity. While this question is valid and important and should be asked at some point, it may require a more lengthy explanation than I wished to burden the candidates with at this point.

I hope the candidates understand too, we're not trying to pick on them but we know what's going on and we want answers before we trust them for four years.

Some of your questions should be asked during the candidate forums to be held.

My mind enjoyed the meal!

Ryan said...

I'm excited for the election season as well. We have a great slate of candidates. Although, they are not affiliated in anyway; I'm working for both Gary Garrett & Gary Winterton.

Interestingly, Yance worked for me for a short time on the Cannon Campaign when I was Chris' Campaign Manager in 2008.

I think Provo is at an important crossroads - much is changing and the decisions our Council makes now will have a lasting impact for years to come.

I've said this before; but I also feel we have an opportunity to bring some semblance of decorum back to the Council as well. That's why I'm excited for the opportunity to see both Winterton and Garrett join the Council. Both thoughtful men that will treat people with respect and dignity.