WOODS CROSS -- The Woods Cross election introduces two new faces running for city council. Councilman Rick Earnshaw will run against Mayor Kent Parry. Tamra Dayley, Ryan Larsen, James Sheldon and Ryan Westergard will vie for the two council seats.
Incumbent Mayor Kent Parry is completing his second four-year term. During his tenure, he has advocated for greater transparency in local government, and he says that will continue to be his focus. He has made it easier for residents to contact him directly, instead of routing through the city offices, by publishing his personal email address and phone number. He believes it is important for the city council to get out occasionally and go door to door to find out what is working with city government and what isn't working.
Mayoral candidate Rick Earnshaw, a lifelong resident of Woods Cross, has been a city councilman for 18 years. He has always wanted to run for mayor. Although Earnshaw said the Woods Cross mayors have been excellent, he decided to run this year because he believes the residents deserve a choice. His top priority is to make sure Woods Cross is a safe, united and
family-friendly community in which to raise children. He also would look into making the Metro Fire Department its own taxation district and adjust property taxes accordingly.
Incumbent Councilwoman Tamra Dayley wishes to continue as a voice of the community. She brings professional skills and experience as a financial manager to the decision table. Dayley said a proactive plan is needed to meet the changing landscape of Woods Cross with the right infrastructure and vision to keep the quality of life the city currently experiences. She is focused on the development of the Legacy gateway and the efficient and effective use of your tax dollars for the city's core responsibility of public safety, clean water, waste management and public parks for quality of life.
New to city government, Ryan Larsen is running for city council. He is concerned with continuing to keep the city within its budget and managing growth, while still increasing commercial property revenue. Larsen said he has acquired unique skills, which he can bring to the city council, as an entrepreneur running his fitness business and serving the community as a real estate agent.
Incumbent Ryan Westergard is finishing his first four-year term on the council. Before serving on the council, Westergard served on the planning commission. He said Woods Cross will continue to experience growth, and it is important to guide the development instead of reacting to it. Woods Cross residential growth is pushing against the commercial and industrial businesses, he said, and it is important to maintain open lines of communication, particularly with the refineries. Westergard also sees a great opportunity in the development of 500 South and Redwood Road as the gateway to the city.
James Sheldon did not respond to several phone messages and email requests left by the Standard-Examiner requesting a comment.