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Grantsville's growth top issue in mayoral race

GRANTSVILLE — One of the fastest-growing cities in the state, Grantsville is a big part of the population boom being seen in Tooele County.

Three candidates seeking the mayor's office all say growth is their city's biggest issue, and they all want to be at the helm to deal with it. As incumbent Byron Anderson finishes his first term, he faces a primary challenge from two men who have experience serving in elected offices in the city. The top two vote-getters in the Oct. 4 election will vie for the position in the Nov. 8 general election.

The Deseret Morning News sent a questionnaire to the candidates. A summary of their responses follows:

Byron Anderson, 61, a retired employee of the federal government, calls the city's strategy for adapting to growth "our biggest challenge." To face the boom, Anderson wrote, "I believe we need to maintain a strong sense of community, embracing diversity and a high quality of life for all our citizens. I would encourage widespread participation, information-sharing, planning, consensus-building and leadership . . . Our planning must be dynamic enough to meet the infrastructure needs of our growing population and business opportunities." He listed among his achievements as mayor the creation of more than 1,000 jobs, a new sewer system, an upgrade to the water system, enhancement of the city's parks and ball fields and an improved tax base.

Craig Anderson, 50, is self-employed. He served two terms as a member of the city council and was a member of the Tooele County Zoning Commission. He also said growth management is the city's biggest issue. "I feel that Grantsville needs more citizen involvement in the (growth-planning) process, and that's something that doesn't just happen," he said. "You need leadership and people who want to make that happen, make it part of the process." He said growth also brings infrastructure issues that need to be addressed, including city streets. And he said the fire department "has a lot of issues, but in my opinion, they're not properly funded."

Todd F. Castagno, 38, is a mortgage broker. He is a current city council member in his second year of a four-year term and a planning and zoning commissioner in his fourth year. He agreed that growth serves as the city's top issue, "whether we want it to or not. We currently have a unique opportunity to shape that growth, and I will continue to maintain our rural atmosphere. I envision a city that will continue to allow families to have horses, raise animals for stock shows and continue in our agrarian way of life." He also said there is a need for a modern fire station to replace the city's 1950s-era station, a pedestrian trails system, preservation of open space and better water conservation.