Waterloo Ward One candidates meet in first forum. - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo Ward One candidates meet in first forum.

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Days away from filling a vital seat on the Waterloo City Council, the two candidates came together to talk issues.

Ward One candidates Margaret Klein and Tom Powers were part of a forum hosted Thursday by The League of Women Voters, The Cedar Valley Jaycees, and the NAACP.

A packed house gathered to hear from the candidates fighting for a city council seat that many say will solve the divide among the current council members.

"Who encouraged you to run, Tom?" asked Jane Teaford, a former state representative and the moderator for the event.

 "Quite frankly, nobody except the current city council when they couldn't come together," said Candidate Tom Powers.

Recent disagreements between the council members, since David Jones resigned from the Ward One seat, frustrating the community.

The following comments made during the June 27th council meeting:

"Knock it off. We need unity." 
"Hear about the kind of foolishness that has been reflected here."

 The open seat causing a stalemate in some votes. Many blaming the divide on the failing of the White Water Project.

 "Imagine immersing the river in our community. Not just making it a carnival ride," said Candidate Margaret Klein in reference to her thoughts on the project.

  "The white water vote that was taken is what got me off the bench. It is wrong that we don't look at making this community look attractive in other ways," said Powers.

  But among the talk of business development, lower taxes, and a positive city reputation there was time for the candidates to fire some shots at each other.

   "Nor did a firemen's pact put $3,000 in my campaign account. I stand alone and independent of special interest. I owe no one anything," said Klein.

   "I think it is a little bit disingenuous when you talk about some of the business leaders who are trying to promote this community and I know who she is talking about," said Powers. "At the same time red flags have been risen from her when you look at her campaign committee, who is out putting signs up, and who is out raising money."

   Fronts the two candidates agree on over and over during forum, lowering the taxes in a way that will keep the level of service provided by the city while cutting overspending. Public safety provided by Waterloo Police and Fire Departments also ranked high on the candidates' priorities.

   The special election to fill the Ward One seat in Waterloo is Tuesday, July 12th. 

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