Sedona city council candidate forum

The League of Women Voters Sedona-Verde Valley and Vision Sedona will co-sponsor a Mayor and City Council Candidate Forum on Thursday, Jan. 31, at 6 p.m. in the Community Room of the Sedona Public Library. The forum is open to the public and all Sedona citizens are invited to attend.

The forum will give the mayoral candidates and City Council candidates the opportunity to present their views on key issues and respond to questions from forum moderator Robyn Prud'homme-Bauer, and audience members.

Mayor candidates Pud Colquitt, Rob Adams, Matthew Turner and all five City Council candidates - John Bradshaw, Cliff Hamilton, Suzanne Chafee, Marc Sterling, and Dan Surber - will participate in the forum. Colquitt, Adams, and Turner will run for Sedona's second direct election of the mayor, which is a two-year position. Four of the City Council candidates, Bradshaw, Hamilton, Chafee and Sterling, will vie for two open council seats for a four year term, while Dan Surber will run unopposed for a two-year term, unless a write-in candidacy develops. Ballots will be mailed the week of Feb. 18 for this upcoming Vote-by-Mail election.

During the first half of the forum, attendees will hear from the mayoral candidates. Colquitt, Adams and Turner, will begin by giving their opening statements regarding their qualifications and their beliefs about the most important issues facing Sedona. Then they'll answer and debate two prepared questions from the sponsoring groups, followed by more questions from the audience, and each will then give a closing statement.

The second half of the forum will be devoted to the five City Council candidates, who will also make opening statements, answer prepared questions, answer audience questions, and give closing statements.

All Sedona residents are invited to attend this event, bring their questions, and to become informed about each candidate. There will be an informal "meet and greet" session with the City Council candidates following the forum, 9-9:30 p.m.. Candidates may also have campaign literature 'handouts' at designated tables for residents to peruse. The Community Room at the Sedona Public Library has a capacity for 100 people, and attendees are encouraged to arrive early.

Any resident with a question about voter eligibility, voter registration, or mail-in ballot voting procedures may call Cherry Lawson, Sedona City Clerk, for more information. The last day to register to vote for this election is Feb. 11. Voter registration information is available at Yavapai County office in Cottonwood, your local post office or online at www.servicearizona.com.

Vision Sedona is a citizens group formed to encourage dialogue and debate on local and regional issues. It has sponsored candidate forums in the past three Sedona city elections dedicated to the notion says one of the organizers, James Bishop Jr. that "Democracy will suffer without dedicated participants."

For its part, the League of Women Voters Sedona-Verde Valley encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government and provides opportunities for people throughout the Verde Valley to hear and ask questions from those who wish to be our elected officials.

For more information, contact Robyn Prud'homme-Bauer (lwvsvv@yahoo.com) (928) 639-1045 or William Eaton (visionsedona@esedona.net) 204-1980.

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