Mayor and City Council seats will be on East Side ballots
Filing period to declare as a candidate in the race is from June 1 through June 7
Francis City Council member Byron Ames says timing is everything, especially when deciding to pursue a new position in the community.
Ames’ comments came just days before the opening of the window to declare candidacy for the at-large, non-partisan elections in November. The filing period to declare as a candidate running for an open seat in one of the six municipalities is from June 1 through June 7.
Ames has formally announced that he will be running for mayor of Francis in the upcoming election. Candidates must file paperwork at the appropriate city offices with the recorder or clerk before the end of the day on June 7.
Ames highlighted his experience on the Francis City Council, as well as on planning commission, as motivating factors, adding “I feel ready to step up my service and involvement.”
“I feel like timing-wise in my life, this is a good time for me to be taking on this commitment and if I wait four years, it may not be a good time,” Ames said. “I think I have some ideas and thoughts about our community that would be helpful and make people be interested in becoming active participants in our city and city government.
“Some people have withdrawn themselves from the city over the course of many years and I think I can get them back involved with city government,” he said.
Lee Snelgrove, who was elected in 2013, has not indicated whether he will seek reelection. Attempts to reach Snelgrove were unsuccessful.
The seats held by Ames and Shana Fryer on the Francis City Council will appear on the 2017 ballot, in addition to the mayor’s position. Francis City canceled its elections in 2015 due to a lack of candidates.
Town of Henefer
Mayor Randy Ovard has indicated he is “definitely not” running again for the town’s top position.
Ovard, who has served three terms as mayor, said he believes in new leadership and new spirit.
“First of all, I am 72 years old and after 12 years, you need new blood. At my age, you tend to run out of new ideas and energy,” Ovard said. “I’ve enjoyed it and have worked hard to bring in a lot of grants for our community. Otherwise a town our size wouldn’t be able to survive without them.”
Ovard said a couple residents have expressed an interest in running, but added “Henefer politics are interesting because everyone hangs in the balance until it’s time to put your name in.”
“When I became mayor I didn’t even run and didn’t know anyone was going to vote for me and I voted for the incumbent,” Ovard said. “I didn’t realize there was a group in the city that had gone around the night before for me.
“It’s a good town to work with and there is very little conflict,” he said.
Henefer City Council, which has a four-member board, has two, four-year seats up for reelection. They are held by Kay Richins and Brent Ovard.
First-term Mayor Wade Woolstenhulme has somewhat reluctantly decided to seek reelection.
“The only reason I am hesitating is because I have the (South Summit) high school principal job and that takes a lot of time,” he said.
However, Woolstenhulme said he wants to help the city continue down the path it has taken over the last several years.
“We are starting to get a maintenance plan together for our public works and getting personnel situated. I’m starting to see a little bit of vision of what I want the city to look like when I am done,” Woolstenhulme said.
Woolstenhulme said the city is in a transitional period with impending growth. He said it becomes a balancing act to weigh the needs of the generational-residents against those who have recently moved in.
“It’s tough on everybody because the old don’t want to give up everything and then the new comes in and wants to change it a bit, but not let anyone else come in after them,” Woolstenhulme said.
Woolstenhulme praised the current City Council. He said they are all working together in the best interest of the community.
“When I first ran for mayor, a lot of the old timers they asked me and, well, told me it was my time to man up and put my effort in for the city,” he said. “I think we owe it to our community and I wish everyone would take a chance and do it. Most people just like to sit back and complain, but you can’t do that if you don’t put your name in the race.”
The two four-year seats in Oakley, held by Kendall “Tiny” Woolstenhulme and Steve Wilmoth, will be on the ballot. Wilmoth was appointed to replace former member Amy Rydalch.
Coalville City Mayor Trever Johnson says he is seeking reelection to oversee the completion of several major city projects that are currently underway.
Johnson, who was first elected in 2013, highlighted completion of a new culinary water system and overhaul of the Summit County Fairgrounds as top priorities.
“I also want to go through and change zoning ordinances and polices to make it a lot more appealing for development and commercial growth opportunities,” Johnson said.
Under his direction, Johnson said he believes the city has made “some really good progress” toward handling future growth.
“It’s a tough question because I don’t get a lot of feedback, but I feel like we are setting the city up for the future,” Johnson said. “I feel like we have done a good job these four years in putting Coalville on a path that can sustain growth.”
Two four-year City Council seats, currently held by Cody Blonquist and Rodney Robbins will be on the ballot in Coalville, in addition to Johnson’s seat. Coalville has a five-member board.
Kamas City Mayor Lew Marchant told The Park Record in April he will not run again. Marchant has served has mayor since 2001 and worked for the South Summit School District for more than two decades. In December, Marchant was seriously injured following a traffic accident.
Two of the five council seats in Kamas are up for election. They are currently held by Rod Smith and Diane Atkinson.
To run for city council, a candidate must be: a United States citizen, a registered voter of the municipality, and a resident of the municipality for 12 consecutive months preceding the election.
Forms will have to be picked from the city offices during regular business hours.
Please note that some of the offices are only open a couple of days a week. Call for specific days and hours.
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A man’s death in Francis last month has prompted changes to how East Side emergency services are provided.