Candidate field for Kamas City Council narrowed
Primary in early August eliminated two candidates
When Garry Walker heard he earned the most votes in the primary race for Kamas City Council he says he was excited for the opportunity to advance to the General Election in November.
“I’m pleased to have an opportunity to go into the final election and am looking forward to serving and doing the best I can if I’m elected,” Walker said.
Earlier this month, two candidates, Kaycee Simpson and Matt Atkinson, were eliminated. Walker, a bus driver with the South Summit School District and retired high school football coach, earned the most votes with 219. He currently serves on the planning commission.
“I think all of the candidates that ran are excellent people and all of them will do a super job,” Walker said. “I don’t have any doubts about that. If I can serve, I want to, but only if that’s what the public wants.”
Walker said the No. 1 issue that faces the community is growth. He said the Kamas Valley is rapidly expanding and he wants to help maintain the rural atmosphere he has grown accustomed to.
“It will never be the same old Kamas Valley, but I want to help maintain that atmosphere as much as we can,” Walker said. “There are going to be hotels, but we want to control that as much as we can.”
While he was campaigning, Walker, who is a Kamas native, said most of the people he spoke with have that same concern.
The Aug. 15 primary narrowed the candidate field from six to four. Coalville and Oakley were also required to hold a primary election.
Kamas City has 797 registered votes and 357 or 44.79 percent cast votes for two seats on the City Council, currently held by Diane Atkinson and Kevan Todd. The City Council certified the results from the election on Tuesday, Aug. 22.
Allen McNeil, Amy Yost and Kim Steed are still in the running for a spot on the five-member board. McNeil, who moved to Kamas in 2008 and currently works for the law firm Ames & Ames, earned 201 votes. McNeil did not return multiple messages left by The Park Record by press time.
Yost, who is a Kamas native, said she is looking forward to advancing to the General Election and believes she can “bring a lot to the table.”
“I still have concerns about the growth in the Valley and know that we need to plan properly and have a big vision so we can maintain the values that we have and the lifestyle that we have moving forward for future generations,” Yost said. “But, I also want to be there for the community and represent what the community wants moving forward.”
Another challenge Yost discussed was the City Council’s ability to ensure procedures and codes are enforced.
“I think one thing is following procedures with the City Council and listening to the community when making decisions and making sure procedures are followed because that is really important in moving forward and representing the Valley,” Yost said.
Steed, who has never held a public position before, edged out Matt Atkinson by only one vote to move on to the general election. Unofficial election night results showed Atkinson with 39 votes and Steed 36. However, after the Aug. 22 canvass, the results were flipped.
Steed previously told The Park Record said she moved to Kamas nearly 12 years ago with her husband. The couple owns an excavation company, while Steed also manages a wedding planning service that performs ceremonies at the High Star Ranch.
A former Summit County victim advocate who was facing a felony count of misusing public money pleaded guilty Tuesday to a lesser charge in a deal with prosecutors.