Two Jackson mayoral candidates make their case to club

Friday, February 16, 2007

Two members of the Jackson Board of Aldermen vying for a promotion took their case Thursday to the Cape Girardeau County Pachyderm Club.

David Reiminger and Barbara Lohr are seeking to replace seven-term Mayor Paul Sander. In their presentations to about a dozen members of the Republican club, each cited a resume of civic involvement and a commitment to continued growth in the city of 12,750 people.

John Graham, a businessman seeking the mayor's post as a write-in candidate, was not at the meeting.

In her pitch, Lohr told the group she had learned to listen as a member of the Jackson Plannning and Zoning Commission, where she served 12 years, and the board of aldermen, where she has been a member for five years.

In addition, Lohr defended the city's ongoing increases in electric rates, calling them a prudent move to balance city finances. Two of three 12 percent rate increases are already in effect, with another slated for later this year.

"We are not going to run our city into the red," Lohr said.

Electric utility payments support essential city needs, she said, including equipment for the fire and police departments.

As he presented his credentials, Reiminger said he's convinced after 14 years as an alderman that Jackson needs to strive for more business development. "We need to be a little more balanced instead of just a residential town," Reiminger said.

He proposed implementing commercial zoning for much of the East Main Street corridor that will be opened when a new Interstate 55 interchange is constructed later this year.

Both Reiminger and Lohr promoted a new fire station for Jackson, but worried about financing and the exact location of the project.

On electric rates, Reiminger said the city's rates will stabilize and perhaps fall when a new power plant in Washington County, Ill., begins producing electricity in coming years.

rkeller@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 126

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