Candidates vie for positions in North Bend
Two contested elections in North Bend will task local residents with determining who will serve as Mayor, and who sit on the North Bend Central Board of Education when the dust settles on Nov. 6.
In the race for North Bend Mayor two candidates, Dean Lux and Tom Mullally, are vying for the position.
Prior to running for Mayor, Lux served on the North Bend City Council for seven years as well as served as on the Dodge County Board of Supervisors for 34 years.
Lux says he wants to run the city efficiently, keeping the best interest of its residents in mind at all times.
He said that the biggest issue facing North Bend is the needs for updates to infrastructure like streets and sewers, saying that the towns streets have been neglected for too long.
Mullally is a lifelong North Bend resident who is currently finishing his second term on the North Bend City Council. His family has owned and operated Mullally Plumbing Heating and A/C in North Bend since the 1970s as well as a rental property company over the past few years.
Mullally says he feels it is important to continue to grow and improve North Bend by developing new housing and businesses. He added that updates and maintenance of existing infrastructure needed to improve North Bend.
Mullally says the biggest issues facing North Bend is water quality. He said the town is currently in the process of replacing the town’s water well and that the condition of the town’s filtering system needs to be addressed as well.
In the race for North Bend Central Board of Education four candidates will vie for three spots on the board. Three incumbents — Jeff Bauer, Jeff Peters, and Dan Wesely — are seeking re-election while challenger Justin Taylor will look to be elected to the board for the first time.
Bauer is a farmer and full-time USPS Rural Mail Carrier who has been serving on the North Bend Central Board of Education for the past 16 years.
Bauer says he is seeking re-election in order to continue to be involved in current projects that need to be completed. He added that, if elected, he will continue to vote to use the taxpayers’ money wisely and continue to be a conservative voice for the school district.
Bauer says the board’s top priorities are hiring and keeping highly qualified administrators, teachers and staff members as well as school safety. He added the board has tried to address the issue of school safety by hiring a school resource officer and implementing other security measures at the school.
Bauer says that two key issues facing North Bend are land valuation and tax levies, saying that in order to not burden the taxpayer the board needs prioritize between wants and needs for the school district.
Peters is a financial advisor and owner of Peters Wealth Management who is seeking a third term on the North Bend Central Board of Education.
Peters says he is seeking re-election because he believes that a small town’s survival is directly related to the success of the school. He added that North Bend Central is one of the town’s largest employers and main draws for people moving into the area, citing that it was one of the main reasons he and his wife moved back to raise their family in North Bend.
Peters pointed to student safety as one of the main priorities for the board, saying the addition of secure entrances, security cameras and a school resource officer have addressed some of those concerns.
Peters also pointed to finding a balance between school spending and tax askings as a main issue facing the board during the next term. He says that during his time on the board there have been much needed improvements made in the district, while still asking for less money from taxpayers in 3-out-of-4 years compared to the previous year.
Wesely is a farmer who has served on the North Bend Central Board of Education since 2001.
Wesely says he is seeking re-election because he enjoys working with people that care about the school district as much as he does. He also wants to continue to be a part of continued academic excellence at the school, citing the North Bend Central’s recent National Blue Ribbon Award.
Wesely says that one of the main priorities of the board is the hiring of the best possible candidates whether it be administrators, teachers, and even custodial staff and bus drivers.
Wesely did not point to one major issue facing the community, saying the board needs to look at the whole package all the time. He said it is important for the board to not rush into making final decisions without exploring all the options when it comes to issues like facilities, technology, staffing and budgets.
Taylor is a farmer who is seeking election on the North Bend Central Board of Education for the first time.
Taylor says he is seeking election in hopes of representing all community groups in an effort to enable everyone to feel they have a voice in making educational and administrative decisions. He added that he will make every effort to find out all the facts concerning every decision made by the board, and that he views the opportunity to serve as a way to give back to his community.
Taylor said the top priority of the school board is to make sure every student receives a high level of education so they are prepared for whatever path they choose after graduation. He added that to achieve that goal, it is important to hire high qualified educators in the district.
Taylor says the biggest issue facing North Bend Central is keeping up with technology, providing a safe environment for students, updating and maintain buildings and expanding academic programs while still keeping a low budget. He added that the board may need to scale back and prioritize some of its five-year goals to an 8-10 year timeframe.