Residents of Salt Lake City's west side will choose a new representative on the City Council this year, and Tuesday they will eliminate one of the three candidates for the job.
Voters in the city's central neighborhoods and along the east bench also face primary election choices, with two incumbents trying to hold onto their seats.The race in District 2, which covers the city's southwest quadrant, became wide open last month when incumbent L. Wayne Horrocks withdrew to rest for a year before running for the Legislature.
Vying for his seat are Paul Hutchison, Ted J. Milner and David W. Salner.
In District 4, which covers much of the Central City area, incumbent Alan G. Hardman faces challenges from Wyllis Dorman and Nancy Boyasko.
In eastside District 6, voters will chose from among incumbent Roselyn N. Kirk, Jorge Arce-Larreta and Stephen C. Hemingway.
Here is a look at the candidates and their views:
Paul Hutchison, 70, is a retired retail grocer who has served as chairman of the West Salt Lake Community Council as well as on other community boards. He said he is running because as a lifelong resident of the area he feels a need for the area to regain its traditional sense of pride and feeling of well-being.
As a landlord, Hutchison said he sees no need for the city's proposed landlord-tenant ordinance, which promises to broaden the rights of tenants and to force landlords to make needed repairs within certain time periods.
When it comes to the city's housing problems, particularly the vacant and boarded houses that are prevalent on the west side, Hutchison wants to force owners to either improve their properties or tear them down.
He believes the city must put a lid on tax increases. However, he would channel available resources to the police and fire departments. He believes the city can avoid future tax increases by making its services more efficient.
Hutchison was not enthused by the city's new rain-gutter fee, which requires residents to pay an average of $36 per year so the city can improve its storm-drainage system to meet new federal guidelines. However, he supports the fee if it is necessary.
He does not automatically support a consolidation of the city and county fire departments, saying studies must be conducted to prove such a system would save money. He also wants to reserve judgment on a light-rail system until voters have their say next year.
Ted J. Milner is vice president of operations and a board member of Holzmueller Inc., an architectural woodworking firm. He has served as a political delegate from his area and is the brother of state Rep. Joanne Milner,D-Salt Lake. He has served on various community boards.
A lifelong resident of the area, the Milner, 28, believes he understands the concerns of his district. He is concerned about public safety and about the need to revitalize neighborhoods, create affordable, quality housing and encourage economic development.
He feels strongly about the need to fund effective police and fire departments, but he wants the city to look at every alternative before raising taxes. He believes the city can maintain its services without higher taxes. He wants to study the possibility of consolidating services with the county, and he wants to encourage citizens to become more involved in the city's budget process.
The new $36-per-year rain-gutter fee is a desperate way for the city to collect revenue, Milner said. He believes the fee penalizes homeowners and frustrates efforts to promote home ownership in his district.
He supports a tough landlord-tenant ordinance - one that expands the rights of tenants. He particularly is concerned with landlords who live out of town and neglect their tenants. "Residents need a tool that would empower them to address nuisance houses which can plague a neighborhood," he said.
Government programs providing low-interest loans, and other creative means should be used to reduce the large number of vacant and boarded houses, he said. Milner also wants the city to consider moving vacant houses to vacant lots, a solution he said would keep people from looking outside Salt Lake City when buying a house.
Milner also wants to help residents gain a sense of pride in their areas. He points to the Tongan United Methodist Church, which transformed a vacant grocery store that was the target of vandals into a house of worship.
He generally favors consolidating city and county services and is a staunch supporter of a light-rail transit system.
David W. Salner is an outspoken member of the Socialist Workers Party who lists among previous political experiences a visit to Cuba to learn how to organize and build a socialist society.
A Magcorp employee and a member of the United Steelworkers of America, he said his campaign is aimed at uniting the city's workers to fight against employers who use the capitalist system to "attack" workers.
Salner, 47, wouldn't shy away from tax increases to support firefighters, but he believes the police department is inventing a "crime scare" as an excuse to justify brutality against ethnic minorities and working people. "Funds should not be spent on cops and jails but on jobs, education, housing and medical (services)," he said.
If elected, he would try to initiate a public-works program to build housing, schools and health-care centers and to relieve unemployment. He wants to increase all social programs.
However, Salner doesn't automatically embrace all tax increases. He opposes the city's new rain-gutter fee, saying it places too much of a burden on working people. "Money for city services should come from taxing the corporations and the rich, not working people," he said.
Alan Hardman has voted against the mayor's budget for two years in a row, upset by the rising number of fees. This year, he opposed the rain-gutter fee, saying it will hurt elderly resi
dents and people on fixed incomes.
A associate of Edwards and Daniels Architects, Hardman, 41, is particularly sensitive about taxes. He wants the city to consider combining its police and fire departments with the county before it considers another tax increase. He wants to encourage creative and innovative ways to provide city services, warning that things can't continue at the current pace.
"Current service levels probably cannot be maintained with current revenue," he said. "However, I think taxpayers have reached the limits of their ability to pay higher taxes."
With his architectural experience, Hardman is concerned about the aging houses in his district. He wants the city to pass a separate housing code aimed at preserving those houses. The code would apply more lenient standards to older structures. At the same time, he supports a new landlord-tenant ordinance, saying tenants need protection from abusive landlords and landlords need protection from tenants who destroy property and refuse to pay rent.
Hardman views his district as a battleground between businesses and residential neighborhoods. He wants to achieve a balance between the two - encouraging economic development while preserving historic homes.
Wyllis Dorman finds it ironic that we hear so much about increased democracy in the Soviet Union while most people in her district likely won't vote in the City Council race. As a council member, she would hold town meetings in neighborhoods to open a dialogue between the council and city residents.
A former state legislator, Dorman, 54, takes a dim view of city employees who live in the suburbs. She believes residents of her district won't stand for any more tax increases to support police officers so long as those officers live and spend their city salaries in other places. She wants to force all city employees above a certain management level to live in Salt lake City.
She supports a proposed landlord-tenant ordinance, referring to a 1988 survey that lists 11,433 substandard housing units in the city. But she believes the city won't solve its housing problem until it finds ways to encourage middle-income people to buy houses. She notes a lack of houses in the $55,000-to-$85,000 range and proposes programs that would give incentives to builders and buyers.
Without such programs, Dorman believes the city can't continue to provide services without more taxes or fees. She also strongly supports efforts to consolidate city and county departments.
Nancy Boyasko follows the same Socialist Workers Party philosophy of Salner. A laborer at Kennecott Copper and a member of the United Steelworkers of America, she answered every questions identically to him on a printed survey mailed by the Deseret News.
Boyasko, 34, has fought against nuclear power and weapons. She opposes the Aryan Nations, a neo-Nazi group, and she has worked to defend Indian treaties. She recently returned from a trip to Wichita, Kan., where she protested against pro-life activists who were staging protests of their own.
Incumbent Roselyn Kirk was an opponent of recent tax increases, including the $36-per-year rain-gutter fee. She unsuccessfully proposed a $12 fee.
Kirk, 57, is chairwoman of the city's Redevelopment Agency board and wants to complete a public plaza on Block 57 - a key downtown business area between 200 and 300 South and Main and State streets. She also wants to continue her fight to keep a proposed Olympic speedskating oval out of her district.
Kirk, an associate professor of communications at Salt Lake Community College, is decidedly opposed to new taxes, believing the city should find alternatives. Volunteers and community involvement would help reduce crime, particularly from gangs, she believes. She also favors state laws that would allow the city to reap taxes from the many people who work in the city and take advantage of its services before driving home to the suburbs each night.
The city's proposed landlord-tenant ordinance needs more work, she said. The city has ignored many of the concerns of landlords. She believes the city wouldn't have so many vacant and boarded houses if its housing codes were more realistic and less stringent.
Kirk favors the consolidation of city and county services, believing that city residents are being taxed by both governments for some things. She opposes a light-rail transit system, although she wants it studied further.
Jorge Arce-Larreta is a 20-year resident of the city and a senior contract administrator for Hercules Inc. He wants to increase communication between neighborhoods and the city by establishing neighborhood committees and charging them with studying important issues.
He believes senior citizens in his area are suffering from high taxes, and he believes those high taxes are at least partly the result of poor management.
Arce-Larreta opposes higher taxes but believes the city's police officers and firefighters need more support. He also opposes efforts to consolidate the city and county fire departments, saying the city may lose its current high level of service without saving much money.
The city's new $36 yearly rain-gutter fee was necessary to meet new federal guidelines, Arce-Larreta believes. He hailed the fee as forward-thinking, saying it will allow the city to improve its storm-draining system before being forced to do so.
Major programs are needed to revitalize and redevelop crumbling neighborhoods in some parts of the city, he said. Those programs should include tax incentives for owners who renovate their properties. Arce-Larreta opposes a proposed landlord-tenant ordinance, saying existing laws would solve all problems if they were properly enforced.
Stephen C. Hemingway is a real estate agent who wants the city to attract new, affordable houses to blighted areas and wants to stop the Redevelopment Agency from competing with private developers.
He believes crime and public safety are important issues and would support anything that improves the current situation, even a tax increase if necessary. However, he believes the city can continue to provide for its residents without more taxes. As a council member, he would look for the kinds of solutions business owners must find to continue making money.
Hemingway supports a new landlord-tenant ordinance, believing something is needed to define the responsibilities of landlords and tenants.
"This ordinance would help keep property in better repair, and since 50 percent of all residents in Salt Lake City are renters, it would make it easier to locate quality housing as well as spending less on capital improvements every time a tenant moved out," he said.
He believes the city needed a rain-gutter fee but thinks city leaders should have done more research to determine how much money is needed. He says other cities are charging less for similar projects.
A regular bus rider, Hemingway opposes an expensive light-rail transit system. He would rather expand the current transportation system.