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Mequon Common Council District 5 voters guide

March 21, 2014

Mark Gierl

Age: 58

Employer/occupation: Managing director of investments at Wells Fargo Advisors, Mequon

Education: Bachelor's in comprehensive marketing, MBA with special emphasis finance, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Contact: (262) 618-2028; gierlforaldman@gmail.com

Why are you the right person for the job?

After visiting District 5 residents, I have a real-time understanding of resident's concerns. I'm a member of the Board of Appeals and Park Board. I am also a neighborhood Block Watch Captain and a businessman with a strong financial background to bring skills needed to better analyze ROI of tax dollars.

What is your philosophy on development within the city?

My core belief is to put the whole of our residents' desires first with a focus on maintaining low property taxes. We need to create well-conceived and orderly housing and commercial development strategies that put the ROI in favor of the residents and not just the developers. In addition, we need to become more business-friendly to attract the right mix of retail and light industrial operations without relaxing standards or unwisely spending taxpayer dollars.

What is the number one issue for District 5 voters and how would you solve it?

District 5 residents registered the lowest support for the I-43 and Highland Road interchange of ALL Mequon districts, according to the 2013 Development Study. And more people throughout the city oppose the interchange than support it, when the city's cost obligation and residential tax implications are registered.

The project doesn't have unanimous support and there are unanswered questions including the project's impact on crime in local neighborhoods, total cost to taxpayers and the impact it will have on businesses on Port Washington and Mequon roads.

We need to get solid answers to these questions before any city official can completely support.

Patrick Rochford

Age: 71

Employer/occupation: Founder/owner of Daedalus Research

Education: bachelor's in business and psychology from Ball State University; master's in student personnel administration and psychology from Michigan State University; PhD in history and philosophy of higher education with a research specialty from Indiana University

Contact: (262) 243-5273; rochfordpatrickk@gmail.com

Why are you the right person for the job?

My research background has prepared me to be analytical, inquiring, and a better listener. My 30 years in Mequon have made me a better neighbor. I can help city leadership frame difficult deliberations on growth, taxes, land use, and service levels, while assuring a critical focus on important quality-of-life standards.

What is your philosophy on development within the city?

Mequon's preferred life styles expectations cannot be maintained in a no-growth culture. We need a continuing influx of young professionals, mid-life transplants, downsizing empty-nesters, strong institutions, and supportive businesses to assure community cohesion, vibrant neighborhoods, expanding tax bases, and continued personal investments of social capital for civic improvement. A 5-year loss of over $600 million in equalized valuation has demonstrated that a "no-growth" agenda has dire consequences for our infrastructure, services, top-rated schools, and reputation.

What is the number one issue for District 5 voters and how would you solve it?

The Issue: Do we cross the imaginary Maginot Line of Highland Road? District 5 is the gateway. If we don't plan with an orderly, managed and organic strategy, Mequon could become an afterthought; an aging suburb with resultant high taxes, lots too small to farm and too large to afford, mediocre schools and sub-standard services. On the Port Road corridor, north of Highland there are 750 acres; one-third are reserved environmental spaces. We can partner with stakeholders and initiate conversations to create a blended, cohesive, flexible, 40-year planned community extension.

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