Meet the Fayette candidates

Meet the Fayette candidates

 

Becky Walz
News Editor
bwalz@fayettepublishing.com

 

 

Fayette residents are asked to think long and hard as they cast votes for a new mayor and five councilmembers.

Longtime mayor Bill Dohrmann has decided not to seek re-election, opening the door for candidates Randy Sandhagen and Andrew Wenthe.

Recently Sandhagen noted the wonderful things Dohrmann has done for the Fayette community for years, including the construction of housing developments and the construction that has taken place at Upper Iowa University.

“My experiences working with the City for 18 years and my budgeting skills are an added bonus,” said Sandhagen at the recent “Meet the Candidates” Night at the Fayette Opera House. “We need to stay on track with our city’s infrastructure, as well.”

Having served in the state Legislature for six years, Wenthe believes the large number of contacts he has made may be beneficial for the city of Fayette. A new resident of the city and the vice president of external affairs at Upper Iowa University, Wenthe has worked with city officials on the façade projects in the downtown area.

“There is strength in the ability to reach out and use the relationships I have made. And my goal as mayor is to make Fayette an even better place to live, work, and raise a family,” added Wenthe.

In the race for the five council seats are incumbents Brian Frana, Patty Nefzger, and Todd Sorenson, who have been joined on the ballot by Daniel Boberg, Curtis Larson, Kata McCarville, Kris McGrane, and Rich Patrick.

Boberg has lived in Fayette for over 35 years and has previously served on the council, but he has questioned several planning stages in recent projects and hopes to help move Fayette forward.

Active in area river cleanups and Fayette Appreciation Days, McCarville doesn’t believe UIU would have survived as long as it has without the support of the Fayette community.

“The two are stronger together than either one separate, and we need to always keep it in mind. I am interested in hearing what the community wants to see happen to Fayette in the future,” she said.

McGrane’s goal on the City Council is to have Fayette become an even better place to live, raise a family, work, shop, and visit. He is currently the administrative assistant to the Oelwein chief of police and 911 dispatch supervisor, part-time for the Fayette County Sheriff’s office in West Union, a member of Fayette ambulance crew, the city’s rep for the county E911 board, and a seven-year member of the Watermelon Days committee.

“If I attach my name to something, I am going to work hard to make it successful, and I will do that on City Council, as well,” McGrane said.

Sorenson has been a councilmember for two years and is excited to see the transformation of the downtown façade project at completion.

The incumbent added, “We have done a good job of keeping our small budget balanced here in Fayette. We need to work to continue to beautify our community,”

A professor of business at UIU since 2009, Patrick believes a position on the City Council will allow him to assist the public in enhancing and maintaining the community.

In addition to the customary duties of a council member, Patrick is also interested in serving in three other areas: finance committee to help maintain a fiscal and sound budget for the city; the possibility for Fayette businesses, community colleges, UIU, and high schools to work together to discover what short- and long-term opportunities exist to provide full- and part-time jobs or internships; an opportunity to provide social and service opportunities for young students, including a place for the young people to go late in the afternoons for recreational sports.

Having lived in Fayette for five years with his family, Frana has vested interest in the community as a homeowner, rec board member, and participant in numerous UIU service projects.

He has seen the benefits of having a great working relationship between Fayette residents and UIU, as well as the promotion of the Upper Iowa Business Development Grant to new businesses.

“My vision for Fayette is to become a town where families would like to live because of a safe, clean environment with recreational opportunities,” concluded Frana.

Contact with candidates Curtis Larson and Patty Nefzger was made, but no comments were returned by press time.

Other races

Hawkeye incumbent Brent Ungerer is being challenged by John Necker and Councilman Don Kelly.

In addition, five candidates are seeking three council seats in Hawkeye. Incumbents John Campbell and Tony Sebring will be on the November ballot alongside Wally Herman, Terry Buenzow, and Allison Moschel.

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