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March 23, 2014

A Q&A with Christopher Schreckengost

DUNCAN — Q. City Manager Jim Frieda said recently if the half-cent sales tax extension for economic development is not approved by voters, he will immediately seek voter approval for the city to assess its own half-cent sales tax to address its water and street problems. If elected and the sales tax extension is defeated on April 1, would you favor Frieda’s plan?

A. I think that depends on why the sales tax extension was defeated.  If it was defeated because our citizens are looking for tax relief, it's hard to imagine that another one would pass.  I think putting together a quick tax for a quick fix is not a good plan.  I believe the first course of action is to identify what is the best comprehensive solution to our water/street problems, then identify the cost.  Once we know what money is needed, we should build a comprehensive budget for it.  We will have to look in several areas for this money including, but not limited to, combing through the current budget, additional sales tax, and other revenue streams/resources (Oklahoma Water Resources Board).

Q. Do you think the Duncan Area Economic Development Foundation is doing a good job with its approach to improving the city? Would you like to see changes made in its approach? If so, what changes?

A. My plan would be to look at traffic counts coupled with cost of additional repairs if conditions worsened at each location.  If that is what the city is doing, then I believe they are being fair and reasonable.  

Q. Do you feel the city’s selection process in  choosing which streets should be improved during the beginning stages of repairs is fair and reasonable?

A. As a Duncan citizen not currently elected to local government, I do not have enough specific information to give a detailed answer here.  During my campaign, I have had many conversations with people in DAEDF and I am confident that they want Duncan to succeed and that they are willing to work with the city.  I believe that for the sake of our city's future, we need a successful and progressive DAEDF and just like any other business there needs to be results and accountability.  The city of Duncan and DAEDF need to work together to move Duncan toward a vibrant future.

Q. Which approach do you favor in developing the city’s water supply infrastructure?

A. This is very complex. We must do our research, we should secure our source, we must educate and conserve, and we must think long term. A quick plan to install pumps and lines will only go so far. We need a comprehensive plan that includes a reliable source, reclamation strategy, public awareness, and citizen accountability. What type of research have we done- OWRB, consulting, comparative situations, etc?  We must be diligent and secure our source quickly. We must move forward with ways to reuse our 'dirty water' like irrigation, etc..  We need to educate citizens on the perils of our water situation and how every person can help (shower length, sprinkler heads, running toilets, etc.).  Lastly, ticket folks not following the water rationing plan.  We are now, but we waited six months to do so...six months!

A. What changes, if any, would you like to see Duncan make in the quality of life it offers to its residents?

Q. Our brand is the most valuable thing we own. Recently Duncan was ranked the 15th best community in Oklahoma by a national real estate company.  We can be top five.  I see two opportunities here- the city and it's citizens.   First, the city should always strive to provide a great quality of life- jobs, infrastructure, quality services and recreation.  Second, the citizens must have pride in their city.  Community involvement, well maintained properties, and a respect toward others can go a long way to improving the culture of a city.  The city and it's citizens must work together to create a vibrant quality of life.

 

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The gas buydown event will take place at Hop & Sack in Marlow on Saturday.

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Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
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Either time is fine.

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