All four City Council members running unopposed in Rock Falls
Three candidates running for mayor
ROCK FALLS – Mayor David Blanton will face two opponents in the 2013 campaign, but the four City Council members on the ballot are running unopposed.
Wednesday was the last day for candidates to file for the April 9 city election.
Blanton, 65, will be challenged by City Clerk Bill Wescott, 60, and businessman Allen Boseneiler, 69.
Blanton, who is finishing a second 4-year term, announced his bid for re-election in September. He said he wanted to finish projects, including the riverfront, that he started during his time in office.
Wescott, who also announced in September, said he planned to improve communications with the public. He, like Blanton, supports the riverfront development project.
Boseneiler, who operates Boseneiler’s Family Laundry on West Second Street, has questioned the city’s handling of the riverfront.
Four of the eight City Council seats are up for election. Incumbents Mark Vandersnick of Ward 1, Brian Snow of Ward 2, Jim Schuneman of Ward 3 and John Watts of Ward 4 have no challengers.
Four other seats will be on the ballot in 2015.
Watts, 34, who was appointed to fill a vacancy a few months ago, said he wants residents to become more involved in city government. He said he hopes the lack of opposition is a sign that the public is satisfied with the council’s performance.
“I want people to feel they can come to meetings and be able to voice their opinions,” Watts said.
Vandersnick, 50, said if the council had substantial opposition, it would puts its voice before the voters.
“As far as I can tell, we’re doing a great job as a council,” he said.
Rod Kleckler, 57, who had taken out petitions to run in Ward 3, decided against seeking the office. He said that if he had won, he would stand alone against a council that nearly always followed the mayor’s will.
“It would be like [Alderman] Barry Cox in Sterling,” Kleckler said. “Every time you have a vote, Barry votes the right way. Everyone else votes the way the mayor tells them to.”
Kleckler, who owns Car-Skaden Brake & Bearing Service in Sterling, said the city needs to focus on core issues such as repairing streets. He called the mayor’s proposal to annex the Hennepin Canal “a crazy idea.”
“When the mayor talks about recreational possibilities, it’s a good idea. We have a park district for that,” he said. “The city’s job is to provide sewer, water, garbage, safe streets.”
Two years ago, Kleckler lost a City Council race. He said he was disappointed with the turnout.
Listed are the candidates who are running for Rock Falls city offices:
Mayor: David Blanton (i), Bill Wescott, Allen Boseneiler
Ward 1: Mark Vandersnick (i)
Ward 2: Brian Snow (i)
Ward 3: Jim Schuneman (i)
Ward 4: John Watts (i)
City Clerk: Edward Mulvaney, Eric Arduini, Pam Martinez
i – incumbent