VOTERS GUIDE: Greencastle Borough Council

Staff reports

The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 2, when the polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.

Four seats on Greencastle Borough Council are up for election this year. There are five names on the ballot, incumbent Wade Burkholder as a Democrat, Allen Mairose as a Republican and, because of write-in votes in the May primary, Andrea Rose, Albert Miller and Jan Shafer as both Republicans and Democrats.

In addition, Mike Stenger is running a write-in campaign.

The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 2.

Local candidates in the contested races for Greencastle Borough Council and Greencastle-Antrim School Board were given the opportunity to be featured in the online Voters Guide for USA Today’s Pennsylvania Network, which includes the Echo Pilot. The Voters Guide also covers contested races in other Franklin County communities, as well as those across Pennsylvania, such as state courts. It can be accessed at echo-pilot.com

In the borough: Greencastle's annual leaf collection program begins Oct. 18

Community celebration:Greencastle gets ready for Heritage Christmas

Only Burkholder participated in the online Voters Guide and Stenger's answers to the same questions are being included in print because as a write-in candidate he was not eligible for the Voters Guide.

Here are their unedited responses:

Wade Burkholder

Wade Burkholder

Age: 75

Party: Democrat

Occupation: Volunteer development director at WRGG Radio. Had a 54 year professional career in commercial radio in Franklin and Washington Counties.

What makes you the best candidate for this office?

I make decisions after studying an issue, and determining what I feel is best for a long term solution. I am not seeking the office of Borough Council to see how I can financially enhance myself or a business that I have ownership in. I believe in "life cycle costing" when making major purchases. I have no "axes to grind". No hidden agendas. And, no petty issues to exploit. As a professional communicator, I know how to interact with people in a respectful and positive manner. One learns by listening. I want open communication with everyone. Whether in a public meeting setting, or talking with a citizen one to one.

What are the top two issues facing your borough, and what are your plans to address them?

Small town Greencastle has to deal with the same issues, as larger metropolitan areas ... just on a lesser scale. Let me address police protection, fire protection, and emergency rescue service. For generations, most of fire protection as well as emergency transportation was provided by an all volunteer staff. With changing life styles, and enhanced family obligations the pool of "free" resources continues to dwindle. Thus, the need for paid, fully trained professionals. Funds must be assured to Rescue Hose Company to adequately provide necessary emergency services. This guaranteed revenue is generated with monies assessed via municipal taxes earmarked to RHC for every ones protection. Same for police protection. A safe community needs an adequately staffed ... properly trained contingent of police officers. Up to date equipment, and thorough training for proper use is a must. Again, the need for tax dollars to be assessed and earmarked for the community's safety.

Greencastle's infrastructure has not been updated with a planned program over the years. The need to address this has become a major issue, recently. Sewer and water lines are the Borough's responsibility to maintain. We all want a safe and convenient source of water. As well as a free flowing sewer system. Council as a whole needs to put a long term plan in place, and each year do an adequate amount of replacement. As a council member I'd help with developing such a plan, and give input on how to make it successful. All major issues need to be a full Council effort. Everyone needs to have a voice, and give positive input. The above issues cannot be addressed by any one individual. They need to have thoughtful joint insight. As a person that has rehabbed numerous older properties over the years I feel I can offer a lot of qualified thought into making an improvement plan ... both workable and affordable. Greencastle is a wonderful community. We need to keep it that way!

Mike Stenger

Mike Stenger

 Age: 64

 Party: Republican

Occupation: Retail sales

What makes you the best candidate for this office?

I am not sure best is a good word however, I do believe I am an excellent candidate in the sense that I have not agreed to make a pact with anyone on the current council as well as any partnered candidates. I have a very open mind as well, as a property owner and taxpayer just like many of the voters in Greencastle. In addition, I own a local business that pays additional taxes, so yes how my money gets spent is a priority to me.

That being said I am not naïve to the fact we need to spend money on infrastructure and services to keep our fun-loving community just that.

Two issues facing the borough and plans to address them?

One is going to be a major decision down the road when the stormwater/rain tax rears its ugly head again. We need a current plan to influence a decision to renew our waiver. If our waiver is not renewed after all efforts are exhausted, then we will be faced with the same challenges as before. I am fairly confident the people reading this know what that means. Abandoning the current stormwater fee collection method, that other candidates may endorse, would create the same financial burden all at once on property owners. Not sure who wants to live that again. The current method is building a cushion with a minimal impact on property owners. Only time will tell, but if elected I will certainly be involved in all options that benefit all payers.

To me, the second issue is as big if not bigger than the first. It's an issue in the upcoming election that could adversely affect the whole town.

In my eyes it is simply not a healthy situation to have a majority pact running as a team and openly saying they have an agenda, regardless of the opinions and wishes of the citizens of the Borough. One candidate recently and openly advised the current Council to not enact an item because the new Council is going to overturn that item. Is this really what you as a voter want? Minds that are made up, regardless of the facts or your opinion. Look how well that works at the highest levels of government.

If I am elected I will promise you that I will have an open mind on all issues and not align myself with any clic or pact within the Council.

Lastly I would just like to make sure folks get out and vote!!!