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Kaysville race pits 2 councilmen

Both candidates for mayor - Joe Hill and Brian D. Cook - are experienced in city government as current members of the City Council.

The winner would succeed H. Arthur Johnson, who decided not to seek re-election.In the primary, Hill had 574 votes to Cook's 492. The other two candidates, Bruce McGraw and DeWayne Jay, had just 105 votes combined.

Cook was the most popular City Council candidate two years ago, having the most votes in 1995 election.

Hill is at the end of his four-year council term, and if he is not elected mayor, his city government career will be over, at least temporarily.

Cook still has two years left on his council term.

However, if Cook wins, the City Council will have to appoint a new member to fill out the remainder of his two-year term. It is possible the council might end up reappointing Hill back to the council.

Hill is a lifelong resident of Kaysville and is an agri-businessman who lives in West Kaysville, as does Johnson. He said he understands the challenges of west Kaysville, the city's largest potential growth area.

Cook, meanwhile, is also a graduate of Davis High and long-time resident but is a downtown businessman who said he is in tune with the challenges of business development in the city. He lives on the city's north side.

Both candidates believe they have the time available and schedule flexibility to properly serve as mayor.

The biggest issue in the city currently is how the city can pay for some $10 million in road improvements during the next five years. Whoever is elected will likely be known - good or bad - as the mayor who helped get the city's roads improved - with or without a tax increase.

Neither candidate flat-out favors a property tax increase, wanting to look at other sources of revenue first. Both favor the city imposing a traffic impact fee on new development, though.

Cook said the repair and reconstruction of the city's ailing roads will be his greatest goal, if elected mayor.

Hill said an expansion of resident awareness and involvement in planning and issues, plus preserving the city's past and its future development, are his highest priorities.

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Additional Information

Kaysville mayor

How do propose to pay for all the street improvements the city needs?

JOE HILL: Traffic impact fees on building permits. Strictly adhere to a five-year plan for upgrading and maintaining roads. Broaden Kaysville's tax base through business growth.

BRIAN D. COOK: I resist property-tax increases. I've consulted with the city's finance director and looked at the budget. I believe there's a chance many road improvements can be handled by impact fees and existing road funds - without a tax increases. Still, the city's new street and capital-facilities study needs to be completed first before ruling out any sources of income.

What is your philosophy for handling Kaysville's business growth?

J.H.: Encourage businesses that complement the existing business structure of Kaysville. Support orderly and sensible commercial growth that will generate employment for residents.

B.D.C.: Councilman Reed Nelson has some great ideas that he is working on in this area that I fully support. The basic thrust is to keep Kaysville unique in appearance and its value system. We want to encourage businesses to move in that will incorporate that ethos within their operation.

What is your philosophy for handling Kaysville's residential growth?

J.H.: Update Kaysville's master plan; Ensure long-range planning; Promote citizen input on growth issues; Expand citizen awareness and involvement concerning city ordinances, zoning changes and planning meetings.

B.D.C.: I'll handle this much the same as business growth. The people make Kaysville unique, and we must retain our values as we grow. Protect our downtown and old-town area. Also develop parks on the east side and encourage the rural atmosphere on the west side.

Does the city need a recreation complex?

J.H.: We need and are planning for additional parks and recreation areas on the east and south sides of Kaysville.

B.D.C.: Yes. A recreation center would be a major emphasis in my term as mayor. As soon as the roads have been completed, a recreation center would become a top priority.

Should the city retain its library or join the county library system?

J.H.: We should retain our own library. We have a strong financial trust for operating purposes. We also have a very active and efficient library board. Our library is a great source of community pride.

B.D.C.: Kaysville has its own library because the county wanted to do away with our library if we joined the system. I believe, as the leaders felt then, that it is important for Kaysville to have a library. A future merger is possible, but for now a reciprocal agreement for a small fee to allow access to both systems is a good idea.