MIDVALE — If you're sick of the "D" word already this election season, Wednesday night's event was for you. No debates, just a friendly "meet the candidates" night at Salt Lake County Fire Station No. 22.
The forum was sponsored by the Union and Midvale community councils, and 13 of 18 candidates running for area state and county offices participated.
Noticeably absent was Salt Lake County Mayor Nancy Workman. But the other three mayoral candidates attended before an audience of about 80 people — Democrat Peter Corroon, independent Merrill Cook and new write-in Republican Ellis Ivory.
Corroon emphasized his varied background as his strong point. With experience in law, civil engineering and real estate investment, he believes he would be perfect for county mayor.
How tax dollars are spent, a review of county growth and protecting the foothills are the three main issues he wants to address. He also wants to review the county's ethics policies and look at solving more traffic concerns.
"I love public service," he said.
Ivory, the retired founder of Ivory Homes, said he just considered running for mayor 10 days ago and formally announced his candidacy Tuesday. He said even his wife initially thought he was crazy to run for office, but "there's so much corruption in our government."
As part of his platform, he said he won't draw a salary, use a county vehicle or accept political contributions. He wants to be a pure community servant, he said.
"Nancy Workman is a friend of mine," Ivory said of the beleaguered mayor, who is on paid leave while awaiting a court appearance on two felony counts of misuse of public funds. "I feel very badly for her problems."
Cook said the county definitely needs a new set of ethics guidelines.
"I'm running for office to help re-establish trust," he said.
Cook wants to get rid of conflict-of-interest problems in county government and also try to limit the pressure of special interest groups.
"I want financial integrity," he said, explaining he favors a flat $1,000 limit on campaign contributions, too.
The other 10 candidates at the event were given four minutes each to explain why they are running.