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MENDOTA — Current alderman William Hunt will be challenged by Matt Ramer in the race for Mendota’s 4th Ward.
Hunt highlights his work as the chairman of the finance committee for keeping the city on a fiscally sound footing during the past four years despite difficult economic times as he seeks re-election.
“In fact, Mendota has improved our financial viability since I assumed office,” Hunt said. “I would like to continue moving forward and establish the groundwork whereby Mendota can ensure a stable, secure future for our residents.”
Hunt, a business owner and contractor, specializes in treasury and accounting functions. His opponent works as a tow truck operator for Ramer Automotive and Towing, a family-owned business.
Ramer currently serves as president of Mendota’s Tri-County Fair. “Through my employment and volunteer work, I’m out in our community every day and night,” he said. “I see things that others may not.”
Ramer also notes his accessibility is a bonus for residents.
Both men feel a strong commitment to their community, which factored into their decisions to run for office.
Hunt said he is seeking re-election in order to focus on attracting more business to the community after the city invested in numerous infrastructure projects over the years.
Ramer also cites the lack of employment and business opportunities as a reason to seek office.
“We need employers to add to our real estate tax base and stores to add to our sales tax revenues,” Ramer said.
The candidates differ on the city’s future. Hunt said the groundwork has been laid for attracting businesses and the city already offers many opportunities for residents.
“Our schools are first rate, and our parks are the envy of the Illinois Valley,” he said. “We display a sense of community, values and determination that I am proud to be a part of.
Ramer doesn’t dispute the progress the city has made, but has concerns about whether the city will take the next step.
At this time I think we are stalled in neutral,” he said. “We want to continue forward, but the road isn’t complete, and we aren’t about to turn around. We need to be more aggressive in attracting businesses to our community.”
Ramer’s three objectives are to attract more industry to the city, more retail to the downtown and improve the appearance of U.S. 34 from Interstate 39 into the city.
Hunt wants to maintain a balanced city budget without cuts to existing services, develop a strategic plan for attracting businesses and industry to the city, and continue improvements from demolition of blighted buildings to road and sewer projects.