Both Mayoral Candidates Claim Experience For Office

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Editor's note -- Look for results of today's election on the Roundup's website, www.payson.com

Payson voters go to the polls today (Tuesday) to select the mayor who will lead town government for the next two years.

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Barbara Brewer

The two candidates, Barbara Brewer and Jim Chase, met in a March 9 primary election in which neither was able to garner a clear majority of votes.

Brewer received 1,967 votes or about 47 percent of those cast. Her total was about 125 votes shy of earning her a concise victory. Chase finished with 1,045 votes or 25.1 percent of those cast.

Current mayor Ken Murphy and Diana Sexton were eliminated from the race in the primary. Murphy finished with 624 votes and Sexton had 529.

Brewer is the current vice mayor and Chase is a former town councilor.

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Jim Chase

Although Chase doesn't sit on the current council, he has been a frequent visitor to recent council meetings.

In a question and answer session at the conclusion of the primary, Brewer said it was her experience and two years as Payson's representative on the Central Arizona Association of Governments that distinguished her as a mayoral candidate.

"I have a knowledge and a vision that will serve the town well," she said. "There will be no learning time for me, I will be in a position to lead Payson forward upon taking office."

Chase claims he too has the experience it takes to be an effective mayor.

"While I was in office, the town was in one of the most productive eras," he said. "We were moving forward with vision and growing responsibly."

Chase also said because he was retired, he had the time to "devote passion and enthusiasm to this position."

Regarding noise issues that have generated a good amount of discussion about town and at council meetings, Brewer said "we will need to deal with the issue through a well-thought-out noise ordinance."

Chase contends new federal, state and local regulations are in place, but they must be enforced.

Brewer said she would support a bond initiative to repair and create new town roads. Chase said he would support an initiative to repair existing roads, but not a bond for new roads at this time.

Regarding the proposed Payson community center, Chase said one would have to be built without taxing citizens. Brewer supports building a multi-generational community center that would be used by young and old alike.

Any funding plan for the center, she said, must have the support and vote of the people.

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