KENTON — Two Republican candidates will face off Tuesday for the mayoral primary election.
Kenton Mayor Randy Manns will face 3rd Ward Councilman Tom Taylor for the mayoral seat.
Taylor said one of his goals, if he were elected mayor, would be to “bring Kenton into a more fiscally responsible state.” He is also a member of the finance committee for the city. He said the financial outlook for the city should be more long-term, such as a five-year span, over the current year-to-year mindset.
“It seems like all of our focus is on the next year and we’re not really saving for things in the future,” he said.
The mayor sees it differently, however.
“I believe my administration is one of progress,” Manns said, adding that Kenton has been successful in attracting new businesses and nuisance properties are being torn down. “I believe the other would be one of going back to status quo government.”
In May, Manns said the city will spend $700,000 to repair the streets within the city.
“I guess the big difference is that I’m willing to take the taxpayer’s money and then place it where they want it to be placed,” he said, adding the city has generated more revenue than what has been spent on expenditures in the past three years.
Taylor said there should be a 15-year plan for the roads in Kenton proper.
“It’s mostly about budget, living within our means as much as we can — effectively for the city of Kenton,” Taylor said.
Typically, the city has been spending between $700,000 to $1 million more than the city’s projections, Taylor said.
“It’s been a struggle trying to keep our funds where they need to be,” he said.
Money has been spent on streets and parks, Manns said.
“Our streets are in dire need of being resurfaced,” he said. “I guess that’s one big difference [between ideas for administration], ours is progress and I believe his is digress, going back to status quo government.”
Since Manns has taken office, “there really haven’t been any staff meetings since he took office,” Taylor said. “I’d like to institute those back again so all of our departments are communicating with each other” to address potential issues openly.