The following is a brief look at the issues of the day, with responses from the candidates hoping to guide the Town of Payson into the future. Part I was published in Friday's Roundup.
7. Do you support town incentives for affordable housing?
Jack Jasper - NO - Affordable housing is a real problem for the town. I think those projects would have to be looked at on a case-by-case basis.
Steven Lanyi - NO - There have been too many developers already that have come to town promising affordable housing, then jacked up the price. Everybody needs a good library, from the children to college students to adults.
Ray Schum - NO - But, I think we should to all we can to get grants and whatever else to support the idea of affordable housing.
Vern Stiffler - NO - I'm not for putting town money into affordable housing. That's something that should be handled by private sources, or state or federal grants. None of the local tax dollars should go into that.
Barbara Brewer - YES - Since we have this grant money available, let's help the people who are here.
Hilda M. Crawford - YES - I wish we had developers who would come forward and help us with that.
Ruby P. Finney - NO - But affordable housing is available through a number of federal programs. I don't think the town itself should have to provide it.
Jack Monschein - YES - I would like to see that move forward as quickly as possible, but I don't know what the incentives would be.
Bryan Siverson - YES - Our current affordable housing incentives are funded by federal grants.
Dick Wolfe - YES - I've reviewed the affordable housing committee's recommendations, and hope the town adopts it, and is serious about implementing it.
8. Do you support the planned expansion of the Payson airport?
Jasper - NO - Absolutely not, the way it's planned right now. I don't think we need to expand at the rate that they're saying we have to.
Lanyi - NO - Airport expansion is only benefiting a handful of people. If they want to expand the airport, then it should be paid for by those who are using it.
Schum - YES - Every progressive town has an airport, and if we don't expand and grow, that's the same as going backwards.
Stiffler - YES - I support the master plan of the airport. We have to be careful to utilize the matching local dollars to maximize the best results.
Brewer - YES - It is a way to generate economic development in an industrial area. We will never have a big airport, but we do have the land available to bring in aviation-related jobs.
Crawford - NO - It will not serve the people of Payson; it will serve the people who live on Chaparral Pines and the Rim Club. I don't think it will bring us anything but noise and pollution.
Finney - NO - We have an adequate airport to serve what we need right now. I know for sure we don't need a terminal.
Monschein - UNDECIDED - If it's a terminal, I'm not sure we could get a commuter service in here. I would have to study further ... to see what the project is and whether I support it or not.
Siverson - YES - The airport expansion project is 90 percent funded by grants and will help our economic development efforts.
Wolfe - YES - This was a well-thought out master plan for the airport. I think it's very important to the town's economy.
9. Do you support the use of town funds to provide shaded seating at the new Payson Rodeo Grounds?
Jasper - NO - I think that should have been done a long time ago, with the money that was already raised and spent on this.
Lanyi - YES - The town owns it, so the town should cover it.
Schum - YES - I've been behind the rodeo grounds from the very beginning.
Stiffler - NO - I don't think that's a priority for me right now.
Brewer - NO - The seating fees should be supported by the tourism dollars generated out there.
Crawford - YES - The rodeo is one of our moneymakers, isn't it?
Finney - UNDECIDED - These questions are loaded. I need to know what it's going to cost and who's going to pay for it.
Monschein - YES - I would hate to go to a rodeo in August with a temperature hovering around 100 with just my head in my hat. I also think we should buy bleachers, not lease them, so we have something for the next 50 years.
Siverson - YES - The events at the rodeo grounds create a positive economic boost for our community.
Wolfe - NO - I don't believe we should do that right now. I think we need to finish developing the rodeo grounds so that it can be used for other events so it can raise money, then let's deal with amenities like covered seating.
10. Do you think the town's approach to water exploration and development is acceptable?
Jasper - YES - I think it's appropriate. I don't believe the town should approve any more development until there's more water in town's system.
Lanyi - NO - How many more dry wells is the town going to drill?
Schum - YES - I have confidence in (the water department). I would hope the town is doing all it can in this area.
Stiffler - YES - It's not only acceptable, but we've taken every avenue that's available to us at this point to explore for water outside the town boundaries.
Brewer - YES - We need to be a partner with Gila County on the memorandum of understanding for the purchase and development of Cibola water. And if we don't, we're missing the boat.
Crawford - YES - They have an awful lot of dry holes, but I wish they'd continue and find water somewhere.
Finney - YES - I suppose it's acceptable until we run out of money, and we're getting there fast. I don't know what we'll do when the money's gone.
Monschein - YES - They are moving as quickly as they possibly can.
Siverson - YES - I will continue to support and increase our town's aggressive water exploration projects.
Wolfe - YES - But, I also think we need to revisit the town joining the regional water alliance. I don't think we should be standing alone in our efforts to find additional water resources.
Top five priorities ranked in order of importance:
Jasper - Water exploration, Payson Public Library, garbage collection and recycling, highway bypass, impact fees.
Lanyi - Water, Payson Public Library, water to control growth, impact fees, affordable housing.
Schum - Water exploration, Payson Public Library, Main Street redevelopment, impact fees and controlling airport expansion.
Stiffler - Water, library, water to control growth, impact fees, highway bypass.
Brewer - Water exploration and development, Payson Public Library, Main Street redevelopment, affordable housing, airport expansion.
Crawford - Water, Payson Public Library, shaded seating at rodeo, using water as a means of controlling growth.
Finney - Water exploration, Payson Public Library, highway loop, impact fees, controlling airport expansion.
Monschein - Water, Payson Public Library, more street improvements, affordable housing, and a tie between shaded seating at the rodeo grounds and Green Valley redevelopment.
Siverson - Water exploration, Payson Public Library, road improvements, Main Street revitalization, affordable housing.
Wolfe - Water, Payson Public Library, water-to-control-growth policy, garbage collection/recycling, affordable housing.