City Council candidate question of the week, Week 14: Qualifications
Each week through the general election, The Breeze will ask the candidates for Cape Coral City Council an issue-related question. In the interest of fairness, each candidate is limited to the same amount of space, about 100 words, for their response.
MARNI LIN SAWICKI
My extensive business experience in the Insurance Industry prepared me to be your Mayor. The field of insurance is one of the most fiscally conservative industries around. I have a strong background in marketing AND in managing the bottom line. I am proud that I have successfully balanced multi-million dollar budgets. I understand wants versus needs. As a single mother of two, I live this every day. As your mayor, I will serve with integrity, compassion and respect. I will represent our city in a way that showcases all the positive things we have to offer. I will be that ambassador that works hard to break down the barriers that are preventing us from being the best we can be.
JOHN J. SULLIVAN (incumbent)
Answer not provided.
JAMES (JIM) BURCH
Former District #1 Council Member and Mayor. Reduced budget a record amount during worst recession country has ever seen. Able to take advantage of market conditions and build police building, fire station, Charter high school, Sanborn, Rosen and Stonis parks for less than half of what the ill-conceived Public Safety Building referendum called for. Boards – MPO, Southwest Regional Planning Council, CRA and Chamber of Commerce Liaison, Horizon Council, Transportation Advisory Council, Golf Course Advisory Board. Endorsed by ALL participating Cape Professional Organizations including the News-Press. Won ALL straw polls at ALL debates by an 85% to 15% margin (top vote getter of all candidates). Founder and former owner of business that went from two employees to 25 with gross annual receipts of $2 million. Former director of major engineering firm and vice president of major construction firm. Currently chairman of American Public Works Association and president of Cape Coral Mayors Scholarship Fund. Experience in life, private business and public service that merge into a solid core of passion and experience to Move This City Forward!
DAVID R. HEADD
The most important qualifications for the position are COMMON SENSE, HONESTY & EMPATHY, all of which I possess. You need those traits to gain the confidence and trust of the electorate. When the public finds out the fire assessment tax, as proposed, contains an automatic annual tax increase if enacted in its current form, supporters will lose all credibility with the electorate. It doesn’t matter how many boards you have sat on or how much tax money you have spent, if you do not understand the needs of the people, you will be an ineffective leader. When you start imposing your beliefs on others, then you are not doing your job. I remember a candidate once submitting a resume which attested to belonging to almost 100 organizations in less than 3 years residency, so credentials alone are not the answer. It has been a pleasure talking to YOU the public over the past 14 weeks and now it’s your turn. GO OUT AND VOTE
CHRIS N. CHULAKES-LEETZ (incumbent)
*2009 Elected to Cape Coral City Council (first term); *1992 Elected Library Board Trustee (1992-1996 Illinois); *Veteran United States Air Force 1973-1977 (Honorable Discharge); *Vietnam Veterans of America Fire Base 594 (Active Member); *A.S. Degree Emergency Medical Services (1983); *Bachelor’s Degree UI, concentration in Business & Psychology 1988; *Licensed Florida Realtor (current); Nationally Certified Paramedic (20 years); *Nationally and Illinois Certified Fire Fighter (20 years); *Critical Incident Stress Team Member (1983-forward); *Certified in Adult Education (1988); *US Coast Guard Master of Steam 25 Ton (10 years); *Lifetime Member Bereaved Parents of the USA; Member & Team Leader PAWS (Pets Are Working Saints) Grace Church.
Additional Qualifications if space were allowed.
Support a Veteran, Please Vote Nov. 5. Thank You
As a native Floridian and 25-year resident of Cape Coral, I have both the historical knowledge and vision for the potential of Cape Coral. My knowledge from experiencing Cape Coral first hand, as well as my involvement in local civic, political and charitable associations will allow me to not just lead District 4 but the City of Cape Coral into the future. I will bring a fresh look on the issues facing our city. I shall show the respect that all residents deserve from council and I will continue working on viable solutions on issues facing our city. Let us begin working together for Cape Coral on Nov. 5.
KEVIN M. McGRAIL (incumbent)
My qualifications to continue as your Council representative from District 6 are my four years of service with distinction. When I took office in 2009, my opponent questioned my ability to work a full time job and perform the duties of a Cape Coral Councilman. The fact I am on six different boards and committees and have attended EVERY Council meeting and special meeting over four years with perfect attendance should put that argument to rest forever. I have a BS degree from Michigan State University and have raised my family in Cape Coral for the past 24 years. I KNOW this City and its history and am prepared to keep it moving forward to its bright future. Look at my record of positive accomplishment and you will see I have always sought to keep Cape Coral moving forward. I would appreciate your vote to keep me on the job as YOUR Councilman from District 6.
I am the most experienced incumbent challenger, actively involved for 9 years with city and county government, businesses and citizens in planning, zoning, water quality management, and commercial building standards: Self-starter who helped develop neighborhood-friendly CAC land use classification and MR zoning that enabled city staff to initiate 26 land use changes, in response to Prop 4 threat.
Most knowledgeable in environmental and water quality issues as an original stakeholder in the Ceitus Barrier issues and member of lobbying team that successfully staved off Lee County lawsuit threat.
Familiar with DCD operations as a volunteer in Permitting Dept.
Extensive knowledge of road and traffic issues from serving 4 years as city’s representative on MPO Citizen’s Advisory Committee.
Experienced leader with 22 years in the military and 20 years in business management.
Fiscal conservative; independent thinker of highest character; not beholden to special interests; and will serve FULL-time.
* Voter registration:
Applications are available
online at www.leeelections.com,
at all Lee County libraries, and other locations including Cape Coral City Hall at 1015 Cultural Park Blvd., Cape Coral Chamber of Commerce at 2051 Cape Coral Parkway, Department of Motor Vehicles offices, and all Lee County Supervisor of Elections offices including the one in the Cape at 1031 S.E. 9th Place,
Suite 3. A full list is available at www.leeelections.com.
* Early voting locations:
* Lee County Elections Cape Coral Branch Office 1031 S.E. 9th Place, Suite 3 (behind the Lee County Government Center).
* Lee County Elections Main Office at the Constitutional Complex in Fort Myers at 2480 Thompson St., third floor.
* City of Cape Coral
General Election: Nov. 5
Voter Registration Book
closed: Oct. 7
Early voting Oct. 28-31, Nov. 1-2.
Cape Coral City Council races are non-partisan,citywide elections meaning registered voters can cast a ballot in each race, no matter party affiliation, no matter the district in which they live.