Waterloo mayoral candidates square off - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo mayoral candidates square off

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Waterloo's mayoral candidates squared off as neighborhood leaders quizzed them at a forum Monday night. The Waterloo Neighborhood Coalition welcomed Buck Clark and Reggie Schmitt as part of its monthly meeting. The race is something of a repeat from 2 years ago when Clark and Schmitt were candidates to replace Tim Hurley as Waterloo mayor. But this year, Steve Schmitt decided not to run for mayor to allow him to focus on getting re-elected as an at-large city councilman.

Reggie Schmitt says name confusion may have been a factor 2 years ago. Schmitt told the coalition he's better suited to handle upcoming budget issues.

Clark says while there are financial challenges ahead, he says he can handle them. He says his top priority is dealing with an aging infrastructure and finding ways to improve drainage problems.

"We are moving in the right direction. We have to control costs and we have to control our personnel costs and benefits. As I have said, I think we're in good shape to do that this year with our contract negotiations. We have to grow our tax base. The budget will always, always, always be an issue," said Clark.

"I can bring the change that's necessary to help Waterloo grow. The census numbers show our population is the same as the last 10 years and Waterloo can not keep doing what it's been doing for the last 10 years and expect different results every year and I think I can provide that change," said Schmitt.

Both men told the group they'll focus on improving the city's image, attracting business, and streamlining city government. Steve Schmitt, Tavis Hall, and Jerome Amos, Jr. are all running for the at-large city council position - which is also on the ballot next month.

Election day is November 8th.

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