Courtesy photo (left)/NSBNEWS.net photo (right). Saying she wants profitability in government spending and holding the line on taxes, Judy Reiker has announced that she is a candidate for the District 1 City Commission seat held by Randy Richenberg. Reiker's Web site is voteforjudynsb.com.
NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- With her campaign motto of "All together better!" Bouchelle Island resident Judy Reiker said she will challenge incumbent City Commissioner Randy Richenberg for his District 1 seat in the November elections.
Also up for re-election are Mayor Sally Mackay and City Commissioner Jack Grasty. They do not, as yet, have announced challengers
Reiker, 57, who works for Fidelity National Title of New Smyrna Beach, and is past president of the New Smyrna Beach Rotary Club, first announced her candidacy on Tuesday during a Rotary Club meeting and then in an interview Wednesday with NSBNEWS.net.
"I feel I can provide a fresh approach," Reiker said, adding she wants to use her experience in the business world to hold the line on spending in municipal government while still providing quality services.
Reiker said she's a firm believer both don't have to be mutually exclusive, but rather it just takes cooperation, careful planning and oversight.
"The bottom line is profitability," she said of the city's affairs. "I think we need to live within our means. I can read a balance sheet."
Reiker said she would like to see that all city programs are at least breaking even, if not already making money.
"My goal would be to completely get us out of debt," she said.
Reiker said she disagreed with Richenberg's statements earlier this year in which he regretted voting in favor of cutting back a mill-rate increase that resulted in $1.1 million in cuts to the current fiscal budget.
Richenberg said he felt bullied into the vote by Bouchelle Island resident William Kolesczar who threatened a voter recall for anyone on the commission who voted for the increase in spending.
"I was glad they held that millage rate," Reiker said.
"I would not advocate any tax increases. We just can't tax our way out of things."
A message left for Richenberg on his city-issued cellphone for comment was not returned Wednesday night.
Reiker's platform in her words:
Maintain and protect our natural resources and man made assets
* Preserve our history through taking care of our historical sites
* Protect the lagoon, waterways, beaches and inlet
* Pursue ECHO grants and other like resources for the City's benefit
Provide fiscal and managerial oversight
* Review the budget with an eye to where costs can be potentially cut in order to live within our means as a City
* Institute a quarterly budget review process to track our progress toward goal and monitor the City's financial health
* Task each City Enterprise to at least break even or make a profit
* Task City Manager with challenge each department to creatively find ways to save money or increase revenue
Partner with Volusia County to attract higher paying jobs to our City
* Establish a reputation for openness and welcome toward new businesses who desire to establish an enterprise in our City
* Assist a new business through the government system and help them easily become established
* Invite and encourage tourism, but not just for a day trip, but for a weekend at least, where our restaurants and stores would reap the benefits
* Focus on drawing in entities which will provide jobs for our youth so they are not forced to relocate after high school or college
Promote development in accordance with our Comprehensive Plan and a visioning process
* Review the current Comprehensive Plan
* Create a Visioning process to determine what do we want to look like as a City and make plans to determine how to achieve those goals
* Zone in accordance with that plan to place the City in a position to accept new opportunities when they are presented eliminating costly delays
Encourage all citizens to participate in community service
* Recruit participation on Government Boards
* Make city resources easily available for Community Service events such as those sponsored by the Cancer Society, Rotary and Kiwanis
* Support citizens in their attempts to bring in events to the City