SEMINOLE — A third candidate has stepped into the city's political arena to vie for a seat on the City Council.
James Quinn, 69, is making his first bid for public office. Quinn, who is president of his building at Seminole Garden Apartments co-op, said the city should be run with the same fiscal responsibility that has helped the complex trim $250,000 from its budget.
"The people we elect to serve must often be reminded that it is our money they are spending and it must be spent with care," Quinn said.
Two seats are up for grabs in the March 10 election. One is held by Seminole lawyer Peter Hofstra, who has told city officials he does not plan to seek election. The other is held by Tom Barnhorn, who is running for re-election. Former state Rep. Leslie Waters is also considering running.
Quinn is a native of the South Bronx in New York City. He served in the U.S. Navy and worked 12 years for the town of Enfield, Conn., where he last worked as highway superintendent with responsibility for a $3.5-million budget.
"My time with the town of Enfield allowed me to learn about setting up a workable and reasonable budget and to stay within that budget," Quinn said.
He left Enfield to work with the Connecticut Resource Recovery Authority, a state agency responsible for recycling programs and operating the waste-to-energy plants.
He moved to Seminole in 2004 after retiring. In addition to serving as president of his building at Seminole Garden, he is president of the men's club and chairman of the Concerned Citizens of Seminole Gardens.
Quinn is married and has four children.
Election qualifying closes at 4 p.m. Dec. 15. Each candidate must have been a resident and a registered voter in the city for at least one year before qualifying. Candidates must pick up an elections packet from Seminole City Hall and fill out and turn in all documents before the end of qualifying.
Candidates have a choice of getting signatures on 40 petition cards and paying a qualifying fee of $15 and a state election fee of $55.62 or paying a $100 qualifying fee and the $55.62 assessment fee.
Seminole has a council-manager form of government. Council members run at large for one of seven seats on the council (six members and the mayor). The election is nonpartisan. Council members serve three-year terms and must attend at least two meetings each month as well as workshops when scheduled.
The council is responsible for setting the budget, hiring the city manager, city clerk and city attorney, and setting policy. Members are paid $5,562 a year.
To get more information or pick up a packet, call Seminole City Clerk Lesley DeMuth at 391-0204, ext. 102, e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to City Hall, 9199 113th St. N.