Biography:

I was raised in Sandpoint and attended college in Idaho. I traveled extensively looking for a place to settle down. I never found a better place than right here. I am a partner in a local small business and am an active outdoorsman. I make sound decisions based on fact not emotion.

Why are you running for this office? What have you done to prepare to be a council member? (50 words total for both questions).

I want to raise my future children here I want them to enjoy a safe and vibrant community similar to the way Sandpoint was when I grew up. We are at a critical stage in planning what Sandpoint will become. I have been actively following the decisions of council and discussing the concerns of our citizens.

1) When the council redrafted its commercial zoning laws early this year, it backed away from some of the language and ideas presented in the comprehensive plan, specifically in the area of site planning and building aesthetics. After two years of work and countless hours of deliberation by both residents and council members, how strictly should the comp plan be followed when creating zoning ordinances?

I don’t agree that the temporary zoning ordinance failed to follow through on the vision of the Comprehensive Plan. That said, it didn’t fully realize the Comprehensive Plan’s goals because, it wasn’t meant to. The current zoning changes working through Planning & Zoning represent a direction that is beneficial and compatible with the new Comprehensive Plan.

2) Justify the need for City Council meetings that run until 2:30 a.m. If there is no justification, who or what is to blame for the length of the meetings and what will you do to ensure that meetings end at a more reasonable time? Be specific.

The meeting in question that ran until the early hours of the morning did so because of many, many citizens wanting to comment about a particular zoning issue. Council’s deliberations took about an hour. A reasonable, and I would argue necessary, amount of time to make the decision.

3) How is a small, some would say decrepit, piece of property in Sandpoint worth more to the citizens of Sandpoint than the Cedar Street Bridge, and why would you agree to trade away one of the city’s most beloved landmarks?

The ultimate trade by the City represented a failure.


4) Some have called Mayor Gretchen Hellar the “seventh member of council.” Do you think the mayor has overstepped her role in lobbying for or against certain issues?

The phrase doesn’t suggest to me that the Mayor is overstepping her role.  The Mayor may have been failing to use the power vested in her by the City voters to be as effective as she might be. Recently with the need to protect our watershed, we’ve seen the Mayor embrace her role with great success.

5) More and more, sitting on the City Council requires a time commitment similar to a full-time job. Does the number and length of official council and committee meetings preclude those who already have a full-time job from contributing to city government? If so, what can be done to make serving the city more palatable for young professionals?

I am at a stage in my life where I feel more effective and productive than ever before. I’m 29, run a business and oversee the employment of about 60 community members. If you want to have more young professionals on Council, vote for me. I bring energy, clear vision, and tremendous stamina.

6) Should Sandpoint’s water boundary be expanded? If so, under what circumstances?

The current standards are appropriate and can be reviewed, as necessary.

7) The council spent an untold amount of time last year talking about sidewalks and backflow devices. What good comes from letting issues drag on for months instead of making a decision early in the process? What changes would you make to ensure that agenda items are dealt with in a timely manner?

The Backflow issue actually didn’t take much time at all. The time was spread over several months. The problem was it took Council much time to gather the information required to make an informed decision. I will take the appropriate amount of time to produce sound decisions.

8 ) Fair or not, the council has a reputation for being anti-business. Whether or not you believe it’s accurate, hat can you do to change that perception?

I’d really like the City to encourage new and diverse businesses to join our community. We need to be a economically stable year round. We can do this by embracing the Bonner County Economic Development’s efforts in courting new businesses. Once we get them here we need to keep them. For example, I’d hate to see Quest leave.

9) Should the city take control of the Sandpoint train depot? Why or why not?

Yes, if that is what’s required to retain the Historic Depot and the Amtrak stop. I think we have others in our community that have and will take ropes on these efforts. That is one of the many things I love about our community.

10) If the residents of Sandpoint vote down a bond, under what circumstances would it be appropriate to circumvent their decision in favor of judicial confirmation?

I hope the water bond passes on this go-around. We have the ability to take advantage of stimulus funds that will not be available in the future. What a shame to let this opportunity pass. However, if the voters vote it down, the voters will have spoken. I will not support measures the will go against the will of those who elected me.

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