The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Opinion

April 4, 2014

Your View: Determining Joplin’s future

JOPLIN, Mo. — Over the past several months, we have watched as our city council has taken its eye off the prize — a robust recovery from the tornado that means so much for Joplin. We are a city that has a unique opportunity to take ourselves to the next level with infrastructure and amenities we never had before.

Focusing on recovery will lead us to well-paying jobs and an increased quality of life that will make people want to move to Joplin to share in what we have created. The April 8 election gives all of us the opportunity to make our voices heard about the kind of future we want for Joplin.

We formed the Joplin Progress Committee to support candidates who are strong, progressive, positive and open-minded leaders. We are Joplin residents and business owners who are willing to work on behalf of candidates that can lead us to where we all want to go. Business leaders in Joplin have contributed to every election in Joplin’s history — many times giving at levels that allowed them to remain anonymous while contributing to multiple candidates. We believed that in order to call for transparency of our elected officials, we should operate in the same manner. It’s why we decided in the very beginning to organize as a committee and file with the Missouri Ethics Commission. We sent invitations to every certified candidate to get to know them and to offer financial support and/or endorsement if we found a good fit between our values and theirs.

After the interview process we endorsed City Council candidates Miranda Lewis and Gary Shaw and provided endorsement/support to Ryan Stanley, Mike Seibert and Mike Woolston.

For the school board, we endorsed Jeff Koch and provided endorsement/support to Lynda Banwart, Jeff Flowers, Shawn McGrew and Randy Steele.

You can learn more about them at our website, www.joplinprogress.com. We encourage you to vote for these five candidates for city council and to choose three among the five for school board.

There has never been a more important election period for our future.

Working together to spread the message of cooperation instead of partisanship, of service instead of politics, we can show the world what a community can really do when it works for the common good.

Please vote on April 8.

Jane Cage

Joplin Progress Committee

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