(Centralia) 03/19 – The Centralia Chamber of Commerce and Kaskaskia College Thursday night held a candidates’ forum for the two candidates for Mayor along with the five seeking the two open city council positions.
In the mayor’s contest, appointed Mayor Herb Williams and the person he was appointed to replace both spoke about their visions for the City of Centralia. Bryan Kuder won the last election for Mayor but the city council ruled he was not a city resident. Kuder is still fighting that decision in court and assured those in attendance Thursday night that he indeed was and is a Centralia resident. He also said he wanted to bring back pride to the City of Centralia and wanted to get others more involved in volunteering locally.
Herb Williams, the acting Mayor of Centralia told the audience that he was not political and eventually agreed to take the mayor’s position because he loves the city and wants to make the city a better place to live. Williams emphasized his goal was “to do the right thing”.
Both of the candidates say they favor passage of the half-cent sales tax on the April ballot that would pay for the two new fire trucks purchased by the city as well as pay for a third new truck and make other public safety improvements in the future. Both of the men say the sales tax is a better option than raising property taxes.