Vote on Tuesday for Guymon's city council members. Here's a little info about your candidates

Staff Writer

An election for a single seat in Tyrone will also be on ballots, giving voters there a chance to choose who will represent them on the town Board of Trustees.
In Tyrone, the election pertains to an unexpired term for the Tyrone Board of Trustees, in which Jeannett Moore, Kristy Parish and Patricia A. Webber are vying for a seat.

Three seats are up for voters to make a choice in Guymon, and are as follows:

Councilmember, Ward 3
Currently, Vice Mayor Larry Swager is the incumbent for Ward 3, and has filed for reelection. He currently operates the Tag Agency in Guymon and serves as a member of the Convention and Tourism Board.
The city’s funding and budget have been a hot button issue in recent years, with Swager expressing his concerns and often questioning expenditures made.
“I’d like to see the revenues built back up to where it was prior to 2005,” Swager said. “Looking back on it, if we would have known the budget for 2016 was incorrect by $1.6 million, we would have never hired (IBTS).”
Swager stated he would like to see improvements made to the city pool, figure out how to afford repairs to streets and infrastructure, and get work done to the Sunset Hills Golf Course irrigation system. He believes having city employees back under the umbrella of the City of Guymon will bring improvements, and the city’s financial standing will definitely improve.

Geraldine Sanchez filed to run against Swager and serves on the city’s Tree and Parks Board.
Sanchez says she is running because she wants to see Guymon grow. She has lived in the Guymon area since 2001, attended college at Oklahoma Panhandle State University and began calling Guymon home about three years ago.
“The reason why I’m so involved now is because I want to make Guymon my home. I want Guymon to have attractions so people want to stay here,” Sanchez said.

Councilmember, Ward 4
Mayor Kim Peterson is the incumbent for Ward 4, and as mayor, represents Guymon around the state. He has lived in Guymon almost all his life.
“Guymon has been a great place to grow up, and I’ve lived here all my life except the first year when my folks were in Beaver,” Peterson said. “I want to work hard, I’ve worked hard and I’ll continue to work hard to… make Guymon a better place to live.”
He stated the driving force for most elected officials is the future, and that we must invest in ourselves, including looking at the preliminary plans to do renovations to Main Street. He expressed pride in those who have put in the work to clean up their own properties, and encourages Guymonites to work together for a common cause.
As a note, the election does not decide who serves the city as mayor. Once the election results are complete, city council will take a vote during a regular meeting and decide which of the members of council will serve as mayor for the next year.

Patrick Coble has filed to run for the Ward 4 position. He is an 11th Grade English Teacher at Guymon High School and a veteran who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
“The reason I chose to run for city council is I feel that the current city council has not been able to keep a firm grasp on everything that needs to be done,” Coble said.
Coble stated that through his work as a teacher, he encourages his students that if an individual sees changes to be made, then the individual needs to be the change they want to see.

Elwin Burrow will also appear on the ballot. Although his filing shows his address as a location in Ward 1, his candidacy was not contested.

Councilmember, At-Large
Incumbent Chet Krone did not file to run for re-election and will not appear on the ballot at the polls.

Mitch Egger, recognized as Volunteer of the Year at the annual Guymon Chamber of Commerce Banquet, currently serves as the chamber’s head of the Rodeo Committee. He is a financial advisor with Edward Jones in Guymon.
“I had a whole lot of people wanting me to run after trying to turn the rodeo around financially,” Egger said.
Egger believes his understanding of finances will help him in a role on council, and noted that as the largest town in the Oklahoma panhandle and needs amenities to help foster growth.

Les Shrum, owner of VIP Electrical and Security, will appear on the ballot.
“One of the main reasons I’m running is, I know since we just got rid of IBTS, you know, we’re really going to have to look at the budget as far as what’s going on for the city,” Shrum said.
He said he doesn’t want to see Guymon in the same position it has been in for the past 10 to 15 years and sees the potential for progress as a new business, the Golden Mesa Casino, is ready to get started soon. He noted with the right business-midid people in council, the city could capitalize off of that and grow.

Larry Watson is a minister at First Christian Church in Guymon. He noted that during conversations with others regarding the county-wide sales tax vote, some individuals gave him strong encouragement to run for a city council position.
“Guymon is at the size that we need more services, but we don’t have the money to five those services,” Watson said.
He stated he believes the best things city council has done in recent months has been to get a higher hotel/motel tax passed and put support behind the Nash Soccer Complex.

On April 2, voting takes place from 7 a.m. and polls close at 7 p.m. The Texas County Election board can be found at 301 N. Main St. in Guymon. If you have questions about your voter eligibility or where to vote, call (580)338-7644.

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