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Opinion: Our choices on Rochester candidates

Our endorsements for November election

On Tuesday, November 7, residents in Rochester and Rochester Hills are being asked to decide who will represent them on their respective city councils. We sent out questionnaires to all candidates running in these elections, and questionnaires had to be returned in order to be considered for endorsement.

Overall, for both cities, we were extremely impressed with the strong field of candidates running for both city councils. Here’s our opinion of who would be voters’ best bet.

Rochester City Council

Four seats; three highest vote totals, four-year term;

fourth highest vote total, two-year term

In Rochester, voters must choose among six knowledgeable candidates for four open seats, with the three candidates garnering the most votes winning four-year terms, and the one with the fourth highest vote total receiving a two-year term.

In none of the candidate responses did we hear a reason that incumbent council members STUART BIKSON and ANN PETERSON shouldn’t be returned to office, and we concur. They are both qualified incumbents, each with strong institutional knowledge of the city and the future challenges it will face. While we do not always agree with some of Bikson’s votes, we are impressed with his thoughtfulness and that he is not a rubber stamp councilman. We would advise him that not all tax increases are harmful, as they are part of a citizen’s responsibility in helping their municipality provide for its residents.

While DEAN BEVACQUA has limited community experience, he is a critical thinker whose thoughtful responses addressing the city’s infrastructure and potential housing needs struck us as someone ready to join the council table. NANCY SALVIA, who has been an active community volunteer, recognizes the importance of continuing to improve the city’s infrastructure while balancing business opportunities.

Rochester Hills City Council

Member At Large – Four-year term

Both incumbent KEVIN BROWN and challenger Jenny McCardle would be an excellent choice for this seat, and while McCardle provided strong answers to our questions, we did not see a reason to not return Brown to city council. He has been a knowledgeable part of a strong Rochester Hills council, which works well together. His institutional knowledge is an added bonus.

Rochester Hills City Council

Fourth District – Four-year term

We would have liked to have considered both candidates, but received a questionnaire only from RYAN DEEL. Rochester Hills fourth district residents will do well to choose Deel, who as a library board member, has a history of involvement. He has studied the issues facing the city, understanding the importance of the Auburn Road corridor as well as capital improvement needs.

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