Friday, November 4, 2005

Four unopposed races on Carey ballot

Mayor says Carey candidates face a number of issues, the majority of which are related to growth

Express Staff Writer

Like their Wood River Valley counterparts to the northwest, the town of Carey today is facing a number of issues brought about by recent upturns in growth.

In the past 10 years, change has come to the rural, eastern Blaine County community in a big way, said Carey Mayor Rick Baird.

Currently, Carey is comprised of approximately 200 to 300 lots connected to the town's water system, he said. A telling number is the roughly 1,400 housing lots that are either in the planning stages in Carey or nearly there, Baird said.

"Three years ago they weren't on the table," he said.

Issues facing Carey all have to do with growth and its potential for changing the face of the small community, Baird said. Managing growth and ensuring that it doesn't change the rural, pioneer and agricultural character of Carey is paramount, he said.

"Those are the key issues," Baird said.

Issues like providing affordable housing and making sure growth pays for itself and doesn't harm the town's current level of services like police, fire and ambulance are also important, he said.

Baird remains upbeat about Carey's future, though.

"It's (the issues facing Carey) a handful," he said. "But we have a great City Council and a great Planning and Zoning Commission."

No doubt these issues will be on the minds of many Carey voters on Tuesday, Nov. 8, as they go to the polls to vote on four separate municipal races.

All four of the Carey candidates are running unopposed, including three for City Council seats and one, Baird, for the office of mayor. The deadline for write-in candidates to file for municipal elections—5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 25—passed without the emergence of any new would-be challengers.

Candidates for Carey offices include:

· Incumbent Carey Mayor Rick Baird is up for re-election for another four-year term.

· Incumbent City Council member Bob Simpson is also up for re-election for another four-year term.

· Incumbent City Council member Vonnie Olsen—nominated to a vacated seat in June—is up for election to finish out the final two years of a four-year term.

· Jeff Koudelka is the only new face on this year's ballot and is running for the seat being vacated by City Council member Randy Patterson.

Carey's only polling location is at the City Hall, 20482 N. Main St.

Carey residents not registered to vote can do so in one of two ways: either show a valid current Idaho driver's license with a current Carey address, or lacking that, provide both their social security number and a utility bill that shows proof of residency in Carey for at least 30 days.

For Carey election-related questions, city residents can call either the Blaine County Recorder's office at (208) 788-5505, or the Carey City Hall at (208) 823-4045.

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