Council candidate profile: Mark WackerfussConcerned about city spending, property taxes and commercial building vacancies, Mark Wackerfuss started attending Woodbury City Council meetings.
Concerned about city spending, property taxes and commercial building vacancies, Mark Wackerfuss started attending Woodbury City Council meetings.
“I found that the way things operate are not ideal,” he said of city government. That prompted him to run for City Council this fall.
Wackerfuss, a Woodbury native, said he is concerned that city officials are not closely following other government agencies whose actions affect Woodbury. That includes the Metropolitan Council, he said, because it raised a fee on the city and the city’s response simply was to pass on the increase to homeowners. Wackerfuss said the city could hire college students who are interested in government to attend regional government meetings and report back to the City Council with information about issues affecting Woodbury.
As he has campaigned this year, Wackerfuss said he has talked with south Woodbury residents who are not happy with the city’s envisioned residential growth south of Bailey Road. Before more development is allowed, he said the city should make sure existing developments have low vacancies.
“Let’s strengthen our base before we start establishing development in other parts of Woodbury,” he said.
His other proposals include creating a city-operated yard waste and compost site that would be free to city residents. He acknowledged that there already is a private business providing that service in Woodbury.
The city is not doing enough to help encourage local businesses, he said. The city should reduce fees that are assessed to businesses, including for safety inspections, and should consider financial incentives to lure other businesses to town.
Wackerfuss said he believes that if city spending must be cut, it should come from the salaries of top city administrators.
“I would reduce disparity between what the middle managers make and the top executives,” he said.
Occupation: Health counselor, Opportunity Partners, Inc.
Woodbury resident: Most of life