By Robert Barron, Staff Writer
Enid News & Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
Two men running for City Commission Ward 4 have little in common, although both think some changes need to be made.
Rodney Timm and Loyd Kaufman both filed for election to the city commission, with differences of opinion on how the city spends money and sets priorities.
Timm said he is not pleased with the direction the city seems to be going, and the only way to change things is to get involved.
“I’m not pleased with the response to taxpayers,” Timm said. “I have questions about some special projects while basic maintenance is overlooked, such as water. I think we need some common sense to the checkbook of the city.”
Timm believes there have been expenditures for items that are not necessities. People work hard from paycheck to paycheck and wonder where their money is being spent, he said. He thinks the city needs to keep the public better informed.
Timm also is concerned bout road maintenance in his ward. The industrial park is in the ward, and the roads around the park are in poor condition, he said. Those industries employ many people, and Timm wants to make sure roads and streets are available to them.
“If I get elected — with three new commissioners getting elected — maybe we can work together and make the citizens more proud of what we’re doing,” Timm said.
Some of the people he has talked with since announcing his candidacy have questioned Enid Renaissance Project and the proposed parks plan. Most people thought the Renaissance project was voted down, Timm said. Suddenly, the city was doing it and going over budget, he said.
“The Renaissance is one area the city has not been responsive to the taxpayers,” he said. “I don’t think people are wanting to do that. Everyone wants something nice, but we must be careful what we’re doing here.”
Turning to the parks issue, Timm said $50 million sounds like a lot of money to him.
“In the past, we always seem to run over that,” he said. “So many roads and water lines keep breaking, and maybe we should try to have the money back there for maintenance that will pop up we don’t know about.”
Timm is a farmer/rancher, operates a commercial trucking business and works for Lippard Auctioneers.
“I’m not the kind of guy who sits in a chair,” he said.
He is a fourth-generation member of the family farm.
“I’m interested,” he said. “It’s my town, and I want it to be the best it can be.”
Loyd Kaufman is a former Ward 4 commissioner. He is running because he said some people said he did a good job the first time. He was defeated for re-election by current commissioner Drew Ritchie. Ritchie is starting a new business and chose not to run.
Kaufman said he has some concerns city money is being misspent.
“That deal downtown — people voted it down, and they crammed it down our throats,” he said.
He also was critical of Global Spectrum, management company for the Convention Hall and Enid Event Center. He said they have “four or five” contracts with the city and will make about $750,000 annually from the city.
“They are not interested in the city of Enid,” he said.
Kaufman accused the city of failing to pay both principal and interest on the 1982 water bond for the past two years. It has paid only the interest, he said, although he does not know why that was done.
It will take a lot of money to catch up on those principal payments, Kaufman said.
Kaufman also said he is not as up to date on figures as he was while he was a commissioner.
The sales tax revenues continue to rise because prices are higher, he said. They will go up as long as the price of gas is up, he said.
“There are questions that need to be asked down there, why they skipped three years and only paid the interest; they skipped two years and this year,” Kaufman said.
Kaufman said he found much of the information when he was a commissioner, but it took him his entire term to find out.