Three people are running for the opportunity to serve as mayor of Nevada: Rhonda Appelgate, of 615 10th St.; Lynn Lathrop of 1141 South I Ave. and Andrew Murphy of 1068 H Ave. The Nevada Journal gave all three candidates the opportunity to participate in this Question-and-Answer story. Two chose to participate.
Rhonda Appelgate chose not to take part, but wanted our readers to know they can call her and she’ll gladly answer questions.
Contact information for each candidate is listed on the website of the Story County Auditor, under the City Election link.
Number of years you’ve lived in community: 5+
Occupation: Maintenance and engineering manager
Family members: Wife Cristine, two children, Tresa Brown and our son Anthony.
What things – clubs, activities, special events - have you been involved in within your community? Leadership Nevada, Chamber Projects, Planning and Zoning board member, Life Member of the Disabled American Veterans, Council Meetings, Lincoln Highway Days, Kiwanis-sponsored activities
What are the top two to three things that you think the city is doing well? The state auditors have given the city high marks for the city’s accounting practices. Intern program helping with the location mapping of the underground utilities. (ISU student) There are departments that do an exceptional job managing their areas.
What are the top two to three things that the city needs to improve on or change? We need to figure out a way to have more of our city-supported activities at the end of the day be more profitable. Need to be more aggressive with the street repairs. Downtown parking is very important for the existing businesses and will add to the appeal and help bring in others. Working with the established businesses and asking what the city could do better to support their needs.
Describe for us what you will be like as a city leader? What will you bring to the position? I have an easy manner, high expectations and will get along with the city’s department heads. I have a background leading multiple departments setting budgets and goals. I have managed large departments and received training in waste water, clear water treatment, mechanical and electrical. With a construction background, I can be helpful to the city’s staff. The city is growing and with it comes increased opportunities. I would like to be a part of it as your mayor.
Number of years you’ve lived in community: 20+
Occupation: Retired airline pilot and now a business agent for several airline unions
Family members: Wife, Shelley; sons, Andrew and Chris; daughter, Katie; mother-in-law, Dorothy Ray
What things – clubs, activities, special events - have you been involved in within your community? Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Nevada Music Parents, VFW, American Legion, Chamber of Commerce, NEDC, Rotary
What are the top two to three things that you think the city is doing well? We have excellent city staff who do an outstanding job in many areas - snow removal, park maintenance and fire protection to name a few. We have a new water treatment facility, great recreational facilities and a beautiful downtown district. There is always room for improvement, but overall I think our commnity is well served.
What are the top two to three things that the city needs to improve on or change? With the dramatic turnover in our police department in the past few years, I feel we’ve lost some of the community interaction we need to help our officers get connected with the people they serve. In addition, there have been a few street improvement jobs that in my opinion were poorly done and should be reworked.
Describe for us what you will be like as a city leader? What will you bring to the position? I bring four years of experience back to the job. Now that I’m no longer flying, I’ll have the time to devote more energy to the job. Being married to someone who was born and raised in Nevada, and dearly loves this community, is a huge plus for me. Shelley knows the history and magic that Nevada was, and is, and that’s my motivation to keep it growing, ensuring it’s a safe and gentle place to raise kids, and that our seniors have the support they so richly deserve.