SWARTZ CREEK — Three at-large seats on the Swartz Creek City Council are available and four candidates have thrown their hats into the Nov. 3 general election ring. In addition, Nate Henry is unopposed in his bid to retain the District 3 council seat to which he was appointed earlier this year.
Here’s what the candidates had to say:
Dennis W. Cramer, 63
Education: Bachelor of Science, Central Michigan University 2004. Associate of Business, Lansing Community College, 1999. Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1997. Swartz Creek High School 1976.
Accomplishments: Elected to Swartz Creek City Council November 2016. Promoted the current 20-year Swartz Creek City street plan during 2016 campaign. Promoted the Swartz Creek School Bond Millage at various town hall meetings in support of school board superintendent Ben Mainka’s campaign. Appointment to chair Swartz Creek Complete Count Committee for 2020 Census. Appointment to Genesee County Metro Police Board 2018. Appointment to Genesee County Metropolitan Alliance Commission. Appointment to Flint Area Narcotics Group Board. Twenty years of honorable service with The United States Navy, retired in 2017. Father of one daughter. Volunteer with The Friends of The Perkins Library. Member of both The Free and Accepted Masons of Michigan and American Legion Post 294 Swartz Creek. Recent fundraiser: Veterans To Back The Badge.
Tell us what your goals are for the community if elected? Move Swartz Creek into the 21st century by promoting businesses and families to move to Swartz Creek. The construction and completion of a nature trail in the community. To bring horse racing back to Swartz Creek. To make Swartz Creek where families want to move to.
Samantha Fountain, 30
Education: Master of Business Administration — Public Administration
Accomplishments: ZBA alternate and Parks and Recreation Advisory Board member since 2017, Genesee County Great Start Collaborative Advocate since 2014
Tell us what your goals are for the community if elected? If elected to Swartz Creek City Council, I want to put more focus on revitalizing the downtown area, filling up empty store fronts, and making the community more family-friendly. The downtown area has started to see a facelift within the last few years, but I hope to find grants for amenities such as placemaking to help further this process along. I also want to help find ways to actively draw small businesses back into Swartz Creek. My experience working in economic development gives me a great understanding of how vital small businesses are to a community. I think events such as the Family Movie Nights and Jeepers Creekers have added a lot of value to the community, and hope to help expand upon these, creating a place that has more of an inclusive community feel. Lastly, having grown up here and now raising my own children in Swartz Creek, I believe I have a positive and unique perspective to bring to City Council.
John A. Gilbert, 73
Education: 12th grade High school
Accomplishments: Swartz Creek City Council, eight years. Zoning Board of Appeals. Genesee County Metro Alliance trustee. Swartz Creek Area Fire Board. Swartz Creek Veterans Memorial committee.
Tell us what your goals are for the community if elected? I am willing to work with the community on any issues by listening and exploring all options big or small. I have lived in the Swartz Creek area my entire life and I have witnessed the changes over the years and understand the challenges that lay ahead. I am willing to approach each issue open minded and with the help of other council members and the community. I believe we can resolve or lessen the impact of all.
David A. Krueger, 73
Education: BA from Northwestern College, Master of Divinity from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary
Accomplishments: 45 years of service as a Lutheran pastor, 40 in Swartz Creek. 12 years on Swartz Creek City Council, eight years as mayor. Led in forming the Metro Police Authority of Genesee County to improve policing and save money for the citizens of Swartz Creek. Led in promotion of streets millage to rebuild streets in Swartz Creek (we now have the best streets in Genesee County).
Tell us what your goals are for the community if elected? Ensure that Swartz Creek continues to be a safe and secure place to live for all of our residents.
1. Rebuild aging infrastructure in our city (streets, water mains, sewer lines).
2. CUT TAXES whenever possible.
3. Provide maximum freedom for our citizens to pursue their goals and dreams in life.
4. Make Swartz Creek the best place imaginable for our people to live.
5. Develop new public amenities according to the will of our citizens (disk golf course, hiking & biking trail, etc.).
6. Oversee good government and involve as many citizens as possible on city boards and commissions.
Note: I am the only mayor in Genesee County who did not use the COVID-19 epidemic to declare a state of emergency in our city and give myself special powers to dictate lifestyle to our citizens. We have good and intelligent people in Swartz Creek. Nobody here needs me to tell them how to live.
The Genesee County View will run more candidate profiles over the coming weeks for the various races through the county.