Enterprise staff report

Gypsum voters will elect mayor, three council members April 8

Gypsum voters will head to the polls next Tuesday, April 8, to elect a mayor and three council members for four-year terms.

The mayor’s race features only one candidate — current, long-serving mayor Steve Carver. For the three open council seats, there are seven hopefuls.

This election is a polling place election and voters can cast ballots between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. April 8. For additional information or for specific election questions, contact Gypsum Town Clerk Danette Schlegel at 970-524-1738 or email danette@townofgypsum.com

Name: Hagen Kuhl

Occupation: Deputy Sheriff at Eagle County Sheriff’s Office, small business owner of Paladin Consulting LLC, and CEO and Life Coach at The Family Room of Colorado.

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? I decided to run for town council because I believe in giving back to the community in which I live, creating positive change and being receptive to the needs and ideas of the residents.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? Over the next five years the most important issues facing Gypsum are creating a strong commercial core which supports the needs of the residents and visitors, community events, attracting new industries and establishing educational opportunities for all citizens.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: One thing the town has done well is by attracting large commercial operations. Gypsum has the beginning of what could be a strong commercial core along Cooley Mesa Road. Improving Gypsum starts with the citizens of Gypsum, and having a town that provides citizens safe opportunities to enjoy themselves and creates a community that supports business and residents in all stages of life.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? The town can obtain grant funding from government sources, private industry and private business that can increase revenue. This type of funding can potentially facilitate new roads, water systems, and infrastructure that the town needs to flourish.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? Economic development means maintaining current commercial areas, attracting new industries and business which make use of existing infrastructure and resources; which are supported by a skilled work forceand are aligned with the core values of the town of Gypsum.

Name: Chris Estes

Occupation: Rancher

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? I have lived in Gypsum my entire life. Currently, my wife Tina and I own and operate a hay and cow-calf cattle business. I was first elected to the town board in 1990 and served three terms; 1990-94,94-98, and 2004-08. I still feel that I have the knowledge and experience to contribute to the town.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? In the next five years, one of the issues the town will face is determining its direction for the future and the importance of keeping its rural atmosphere alive.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: The town has done a good job of cooperating with prospective businesses in the past. Lately, however, they seem to have gotten away from this principle and have become more concerned with dictating regulations.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? The towns revenue has grown from under $200,000 in 1990, up to $16 million in 2008, and down to $12 million in 2013. The town just needs to operate on a budget within its revenue.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? Economic development is being fiscally conservative and seizing opportunity when it presents itself. Gypsum is and always has been about creating opportunity for businesses to be successful.

Additional comments: During my previous terms on the board, I was involved with the airport annexation, negotiations to bring Costco to the town, and all of the major subdivisions since 1990. I feel this gives me a good understanding and knowledge of the town as it moves forward.

Name: Chris Huffman

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? I believe in contributing to my community, I was on the town’s planning and zoning commission for a number of years until I had to take time to care for my father.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? Expanding our revenue tax base with diversification.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: The town has handled water management very well. Next Gypsum needs to look into future traffic management.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? Try to bring in more light industry and sales tax generating businesses.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? To me it means wisely managing the resources we have and prudently pursuing both long and short term enhancements. The town must protect the assets of the community and pursue capital improvements and investments to attract and support positive development for our diversified community.

Additional comments: People keep calling Gypsum a bedroom community for the upper valley workers, but I believe we are a family community. I would like to see Gypsum keep growing in this way.

Name: Tim McMichael

Occupation: Vice President, Landscape Workshop, Inc., a family owned site development company

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? I was elected to the council 14 years ago. I believed I could, and I have, made a difference for my family and all the families of Gypsum and will continue to do so.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? There are several, actually, first, the aesthetics at the Interstate 70 entrance and the Highway 6 corridor through the town. Bringing more retail/commercial development to the town (restaurants, shopping, home improvement). Continue to build a sense of community for our diverse population in Gypsum.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: Done well — the development of family-oriented recreation including the Gypsum Rec Center, the golf course, the library, the gun club, ballfields, Town Hall Park/Lundgren Theater. To do — Recruit retail/commercial development.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? Bring in retail/commercial development. This will help avoid the need for an increase in property tax to cover town expenditures. Our policy has been not to increase taxes. Gypsum has the lowest retail tax in the valley.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? I helped develop and currently serve on the Economic Development Council, which has helped local businesses and brought in new businesses. Both are key for the financial success of the town of Gypsum and will help local job growth.

Additional comments: I have served our community for over 16 years. I began on the Planning Commission and Recreation Committee. I currently serve on the Economic Development Council, Gypsum Creek Golf Course Leadership, the Gypsum Rec. Center Finance Committee as well as the town council. I would be honored to continue to serve as a council member. I love the town of Gypsum and what we represent and can become, which is and will be the best family oriented community in the valley.

Name: Pamela J. Schultz

Occupation: Legal’s Clerk for Colorado Mountain News Media newspapers

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Board? I have been on the Gypsum Town Council for 24 years, since 1990. I have enjoyed being part of making Gypsum a better place to live, a great place to raise a family and a pro active growth community. I hope to continue to keep working to bring more business to Gypsum, and to keep the momentum going for the recreation for the children, young people and adults of Gypsum.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? Getting and keeping businesses to locate or relocate in Gypsum and keeping the town an affordable and desirable place to own a business. The town is a safe place and we need to keep it that way. Also growing and keeping the recreational opportunities available for all the citizens, young and old.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better? Gypsum has built wonderful recreation resources, in the recreation center, the gun club, the new library, and acquired the Gypsum Creek Golf Course. Gypsum has many walking paths and ballfields and up-to date and safe playgrounds. We need to focus and find ways to increase our business districts and bring life back to the downtown Railroad Street. We need to brighten up our entryway off of I-70 into Gypsum to attract more businesses to our town.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues in without burdening its taxpayers? We have established an economic program to help with current business owners or new business owners to improve or get a new start in their business. So far several people have benefitted from those funds. The town has not had an increase in taxes for a long time and our mill level continues to stay the same — doing this with very careful use of the taxpayers monies and being conservative in what we want and what is needed to keep the town running smoothly.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? To me it means businesses that provide services to the community that include products that the citizens use and need, businesses that bring in a tax revenue to improve and sustain services needed for a growing community. For Gypsum it is looking at businesses that are good for the community to increase the tax revenue and benefit the citizens so they don’t have to travel for services and goods they need in their lives. Businesses that are willing to be a good neighbors and become part of the community are important. Economic development means more support for those businesses that are already in Gypsum.

Name: Marisa Sato

Occupation: Showroom consultant

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? I have served on the board for the Gypsum Chamber of Commerce for the last four years. The town does a lot of great things and I want be further involved with the community. I want to be a voice for my generation. Our future is in our youth’s hands.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? Economic stability and solid business growth in the town.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: The town of Gypsum helps the local businesses by offering grant programs, in addition to funding non-profits and giving back to local athletics. The town needs to have better stability in keeping businesses within the town limits.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? By bringing in more businesses and promoting business within Gypsum we can keep tax dollars in Gypsum.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? Economic stability within Gypsum by promoting businesses and keeping tax dollars within the town. The town will make qualitative and quantative changes for its citizens in a proactive manner to the market in an effort to sustain a higher quality of life.

Additional comments: I feel that my generation is often not represented. As many of my generation do not vote or get involved with affairs, feeling that their voice does not make a difference. I feel that this is not true, hence my bid for town council.

Name: Richard “Dick” Mayne

O ccupation: Real estate development

What made you decide to run for Gypsum Town Council? As a life-time resident of Gypsum I’m concerned about the growth of our town and what can be done to improve the quality of life and to represent the interests of all the residents of the Gypsum community.

What do you think is the most important issue facing Gypsum in the next five years? Improve traffic control and management.

Cite at least one thing you think the town has done well and one thing the town needs to do better: The development of a water supply system that has senior water rights, water quality, the storage capacity to supply water to residents now and for future development. We need to develop more of a town business center.

Gypsum operates on a tight budget. How can the town increase its revenues without burdening its taxpayers? By helping to bring customers to businesses in Gypsum and to work with the business owners who are here to help them be successful and by promoting Gypsum as a community where small and large businesses are successful.

Communities often talk about “economic development.” What does that phrase mean to you and what does it mean for Gypsum? It means that as individuals and businesses are successful, it will help foster more success and business development which means more tax revenues for the town to improve the services and amenities for the residents of Gypsum.


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The VailDaily Updated Apr 4, 2014 07:03PM Published Apr 2, 2014 11:00AM Copyright 2014 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.