A CLOSER LOOK: Fayetteville city council candidates

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ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — Twelve people are running for council seats in Fayetteville. Four in Ward 1 and four in Ward 4, and two in Ward 2 and two in Ward 3.

Fayetteville is in Washington County and is the third-largest city in the state. The population growth has more than doubled over 30 years. The current population is nearly 87,000 in 1990 it was 43,000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Click here for more Arkansas Demographics Data

The election is on November 3.

CITY COUNCIL WARD 1, POSITION 2

CITY COUNCIL WARD 2, POSITION 2

CITY COUNCIL WARD 3, POSITION 2

CITY COUNCIL WARD 4, POSITION 2

KNWA/FOX24 asked the candidates three generic questions about Arkansas

  • In Arkansas, what do you believe is a situation that needs to be dealt with in Fayetteville, for example, airport, water system, environment, community safety?
  • Overall, what can Fayetteville, Arkansas do to improve its economy?
  • Black Lives Matter, what does this US-based international movement mean in Arkansas, in your opinion?
Pedro Fimbres

Pedro Fimbres: The Coronavirus has done a number on our current city and the city has been to some extent shut down, I’m very concerned that this has impacted the city revenue it takes in, our local businesses have felt it the most. Over the last 12 years, many issues are rising, for example, community safety and homelessness, city water flooding, and poor street maintenance, I personally feel like south Fayetteville is the neglected side of town and needs proper representation.

We need to deregulate policies that have been harmful to current and new developers. We need to use our best attributes The Razorbacks to lure more travelers into our city where travelers would pay a higher tax and our local residents have a lower tax rate. We need to help local businesses create better curb appeal for their customers. 

We believe ALL LIVES MATTER. 

Pedro Fimbres, Fayetteville City Council Ward 1, Pos. 2 Candidate
Oroo Oyioka

Oroo Oyioka: Affordable housing tops the list of the issues that need attention. The housing affordability problem would result in increased homelessness if not addressed urgently. Affordable housing zoning and increasing output are key. The city is already dealing with a problem of homelessness which needs attention as well.

We are blessed to be a university city that trains the best engineers, nurses, pharmacists, social workers, teachers, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. We need this talent in our city to keep our families intact as well as increase our tax base. We ought to increase our marketing strategies as well as revisit our regulations to attract businesses to Fayetteville. We also need to nurture new business ventures. overall our city under the leadership of our mayor has seen strides in business growth even though COVID-19 has impacted us.

Fayetteville is a compassionate and progressive city. We embrace Black lives matter. And by the way, this does not exclude any group but rather Black lives should matter just like the rest of other groups’ lives matter. I wish other cities in Arkansas embrace Black Lives Matter as Fayetteville has. Please visit my Facebook page and drop me a like or message me.              

Oroo Oyioka, Fayetteville City Council Ward 1, Pos. 2 Candidate

Tanner Pettigrew

Tanner Pettigrew: Affordable Housing – It’s too big of an issue to ignore or treat without the proper urgency. Because affordable housing fuels both economic growth and healthy neighborhoods, I will consider how each matter facing the city council will affect the goal of providing more affordable housing. It is a goal that will only be accomplished with cooperation from every ward in Fayetteville so that some parts of town are not absorbing too much of the growth in a way that overloads resources and limits opportunity. We need strong, healthy, and affordable neighborhoods throughout Fayetteville that are walkable and close to amenities such as schools, grocery stores, and jobs.

I believe Fayetteville will thrive economically through job creation and affordable housing. It is very important to me to help current businesses here grow and to bring in new employers. I would work to reduce regulations in order to bring in new business and to continue to help the current business grow.  My goal would be able to help find solutions to keep housing costs within reach of our residents and to find creative ways to help residents purchase homes in Fayetteville.   

I believe Black Lives Matter and that racism is a public health crisis. It is very important that Fayetteville continues to be a leader in the state on the matter of civil rights and equality. Locally, we need to foster an environment that allows for peaceful protest and for all community members to be heard on matters ranging from policing to housing to education.

Tanner Pettigrew, Fayetteville City Council Ward 1, Pos. 2 Candidate
William Chesser

William Chesser: We need to figure out how to keep our citizens safe from covid while also protecting local businesses during this pandemic. While things like the ORA were a good starting point, we need to do a LOT more and I think that the next steps are an issue that should be looked at seriously. Post COVID we need to figure out how to get our economy back on track as rapidly as possible.

We regularly make the top 10 list of the best places to live in the US, which is something we should be proud of. That is something that will lead to growth, but we have to remember that simply adding people and bedrooms is not enough to help the economy. In the end, we need to add far more jobs as well, and I think it is important to work with the Chamber of Commerce to continue to attract new jobs and new industries and startups to the area.

That is really simple: It means Black Lives Matter. That is absolutely as true in Fayetteville, AR as it is anywhere else in the nation. On the plus side, I think that our city has taken things seriously with this movement and things like the Mayor’s African American Advisory Council being created are examples of steps we are taking that are in the right direction but we need to continue much further in that direction.

William Chesser, Fayetteville City Council Ward 2, Pos. 2 Candidate

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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