This Q&A is part of our ongoing coverage of the 2013 elections. For a complete list of races, endorsements and other candidate Q&As, please visit our Elections Center.
The Pomeroy City Council has two open positions this year. Incumbent Dennis Gillis is running against challenger Lee Bingman for position 4. Position 5 has no incumbent; Joel Reyerson and Erin Darby are running against each other.
The Union-Bulletin reached out to all four candidates. Neither Gillis nor Darby responded to multiple phone calls, emails and letters. Bingman did not answer the questions sent to him, and instead submitted a personal statement stating he has lived in Pomeroy for 50 years and would be honored to serve on the council and help Pomeroy thrive and grow as a family-friendly community. Below are Joel Reyerson’s responses for City Council position 4.
Position 5: Joel Reyerson
Education: Recently completed program at Northwest Renewable Energy Institute Academy to become a wind turbine technician.
Personal statement: Good day everyone. My name is Joel Reyerson. I have a precious six year old daughter and have been a resident for two years now. My grandparents, Hugo and Carlene Pawlik, have been residents here for over 70 years. My grandpa served in World War II and retired from the post office here in Pomeroy. My mother Susan, three aunts Carla, Marti, Kathy, and uncle Chris Pawlik were all born and raised here as well. I have deep family roots here.
Following are his responses to the Union-Bulletin's questions:
Why should voters choose you over your opponent?
I know little of my opponent other than she and her family have lived here for a little over three years now. The reason you friendly folks should bless me with this opportunity to unconditionally represent and serve you is this: If I say I’m gonna take action to better grow and fight for your rights and what’s right, I’m gonna do just that. That’s it. I will fight to grow and prosper the city of Pomeroy tooth and nail. I’m a simple and straightforward man who gives yes or no answer resolve. No ums, spins or vague issue dancing. I never do anything half-cocked. Yes or no ... All or none.
What is the largest challenge facing Pomeroy and how would you work to solve it during your time in office?
I believe the greatest challenge we in Pomeroy face is this: Our local businesses are in peril and having to close shop do to the economic disaster in this country. What I’d like to see happen is to bring back the golden days of Pomeroy. This is a retirement community, and the very things our senior citizens moved here for are disappearing. We need to put our foot down, so to speak, and halt it in its tracks. It’s wrong!
Pomeroy often uses grants and partnerships with other governments or organizations to provide services for its citizens. How would you identify and take advantage of potential partnerships or grants the city might use?
What I’d like to pursue first if I’m selected and grants are available is to reopen our town and country restaurant. I would also like to pursue the installment of a digital drive in theater and a low-key bowling alley to bring in a little more outside revenue for our town. More importantly, our senior citizens lunch program needs stability and peace of mind.
What would your ideal Pomeroy look like in 10 years?
My ideal Pomeroy in 10 years, would mirror the Pomeroy of the 1950’s. Carefree and booming. All things are possible.
What steps would you take as a council member to encourage business growth in Pomeroy?
The steps to take for Pomeroy growth I believe are to gather citizen concern, opinions, needs, ideas and feedback. Once the feedback has been gathered, it will be submitted to the proper authorities for appropriate funding fruition grants. Thank you for your consideration and I look forward to serving our Pomeroy community. Truly yours, Joel Christian Reyerson.