Only voters in Ward 4 in Havre have a real choice in Tuesday's primary election.
Arnold Tyler and Allen "Woody" Woodwick are running for the Democratic nomination in Ward 4. Ronald Wolford and Erik Meis are seeking the Republican nomination.
Candidates for mayor and other city council seats open this year are unopposed in the primary. Joyce Perzyk and Carl White will both be on the ballot for the city judge position in the primary and general elections.
The following is a Havre Daily News questionnaire filled out by Meis.
Wolford said today he did not have enough time to answer the questionnaire.
Name: Erik Meis
Place of birth: Valley Forge, Pa.
Length of time in Havre: 25 years
Political party: GOP
Favorite TV show: None
Education: High school graduate, Borah-Boise, Idaho; attended Northern Montana College in 1984-85
Last book read: One Man, One Rifle, One Land by J.Y. Jones
Work history: 1976 to present - U.S.P.S. mail contractor; 1985 to present - West Wind Courier Service, Inc.; 1992 to present - Blue Bear Car Wash, EMT Car Wash, Emtas, Inc.; currently employ 10 outstanding individuals
What are your qualifications for the position you are running for? I've owned and operated five businesses the past 25 years. My experience with employees, customers and citizens in the course of conducting business at city, state and federal levels would be an asset to city government.
What would you do to improve the economy and help existing businesses and attract new ones?
(A) Support of 4 for 2 project.
(B) Recently the mayor and City Council had the opportunity to assist two downtown businesses with sidewalk repair. Money was through the Community Transportation Enhancement Program (CTEP). They chose instead to distribute the funds to their pet projects. Message loud and clear to Havre business. Havre city government won't help promote Havre business.
I would aggressively encourage city council to take up a leadership role in pursuing grants and low interest loans to our existing businesses.
(C) To attract new employers. The existing businesses will have to prosper themselves as an example to lure others to Havre.
What alternative revenue sources would you propose to make up for lost revenue due to legislative action? I wouldn't propose any alternative revenue source like the regular six-pak Joe and Jan. City government will need to cut back expenses in the same areas that spending was increased due to legislative action. City must rethink this faulty process of taxing their citizens to make up for shortfalls in their budget.
What would you do to help provide training and access to modern technology (broadband Internet, etc.) to Havre? Regulatory laws need to be changed that would allow companies like, for example, Triangle Co-op, access to markets controlled by other companies that do not want to invest in a community where their return of investment (ROI) isn't up to their projections.
Should the mayor and city council lobby for and support the widening of Highway 2 to four lanes? This should have been a no-brainer for Mayor Leonard and the city council. But so far, the failure of Mayor Leonard and city council not to endorse this project is a pretty strong message of the present city government. Lack of participation in future planning and goals that would benefit Havre and the Hi-Line.
What do you see as the top three problems facing the city of Havre, and how would you address them?
(A) Infrastructure. We need to continue to update and maintain city public works. Identify future projects and set aside funds to avoid catastrophic expenditures.
(B) Attract new business to broaden tax base.
(C) I see juvenile crime, adult crime and litter as an ongoing issue. I feel that the city and county need to address this jointly. I would like to see those juveniles and adults that have been sentenced to community service and fines be assigned to do sweat equity. Litter pick-up, sidewalk sweeping and snow removal, etc. would be a good start. As far as liability is concerned, that's what insurance is for!