Louis Ehmer (Incumbent)Party: RepublicanResidence: Shawnee Drive, Van WertAge: 73Relevant experience: Mayor, 3 years; City council, 9 years; Council president, 3 years; 23 years experience in management and executive position with ChryslerEducation: Industrial engineering degree, Chrysler Institute of EngineeringYears living in area: 27Major issues: Developing 1,600 acre mega site for a large manufacturing facility, meeting a certification date. Maintain city services with declining revenue. Improving the environment downtown. Stimulate the economy by marketing and focusing on activities and events to bring people into the area showing that we are a progressive city even in these slow economic times.Don FarmerParty: RepublicanResidence: East Ervin Road, Van WertRelevant experience: Central Mutual Ins., Los Angeles Office, Personal lines underwriter Bell System, Sales yellow pages, and Federated Dept Stores in Southern California. Independent insurance agent with HBW Insurance, Personal lines and Group Health Ins. Specialist. Owner Operator of The Paint Bucket, and Mac’s Deli. Owner of Pave AdvertisingEducation: Fresno High School, Los Angeles City College, Los Angeles State College (degree in business finance)Years living in area: 35Major issues: Van Wert is feeling the same pressures as many of the communities our size, larger, and smaller, that is loss of jobs. We are competing with each of these communities to attract new industry for our work force that allows a competitive but livable wage. Make sure that our community continues to improve its infrastructure, competitiveness, creativity, appearance, attitude, and the ability to put aside our own individual desires for the sake of the community. Realizing that when the community moves forward our own concerns stand a much better chance of success. I would like to bring to the Mayors office an attitude of positive thinking that will bring our community together. We need to realize that when we work together on our interests and differences as one, we can move this community forward. We will face risks in the future if we want to compete and grow. Maintaining our existing employment levels is first priority. Making sure that essential services such as Police, Fire, Water, Sewer, Street Maintenance and our park system are continued at the level that our community expects. Budget and fiscal responsibility play a major part in our future. My record shows a great concern in this area with a $1 million carryover for each of the four years serving as mayor and showing many improvements to our community. I will promise to work each day for a better Van Wert with honesty, integrity, dedication, hardwork and hold your vote in highest regard.Kirby KellyParty: RepublicanResidence: North Wall Street, Van WertAge: 53Relevant experience: Management, Pizza Hut of Fort Wayne; Route sales, Mechanics Laundry/Cintas, Fort Wayne; Union steward, Teamsters 414, Fort Wayne; Dolly Madison Bakery, route manager, Fort WayneEducation: Van Wert High School, 1976; Bowling Green State University, 1976 to 1979Years living in area: 40+Major issues: Economic development — taking “ownership” by more aggressive participation. Making certain all incentives are in place, zoning is up to date, code enforcement is considered an economic development issue. Streamlining government — making government more responsive to the citizens. Improve web presence — update web site to take advantage of changes in law, to better inform the citizens and to project a “progressive” image.