It is election time in Wyandotte County and time for citizens to engage in the election process. Our elected leaders are chosen by us, the citizens of the county. It is our privilege and responsibility to make these choices. However, how can we make a choice when we do not know the candidates running for office?
This year groups throughout the county are working to give citizens multiple chances both before the primary election and general election to get to know their candidates. Neighborhood Revitalization Associations (NBRs) have invited candidates to their monthly meetings to speak. NBRs, Chambers and independent business associations are working together to provide forums to answer questions important to business and residents. They are also working to make sure those who cannot attend forums have other options to hear these forums through re-broadcasts on the local cable access channel and You-Tube.
The first of these is 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 20 with a Mayoral Primary Forum at the Kansas City, Kan., Public School District office at 2012 N. 59th St. Kansas City Star reporter Dave Helling will be the moderator asking questions developed by the sponsoring groups. The five mayoral candidates on the primary ballot for the mayor-CEO of the Unified Government are (in alphabetical order): Nathan Barnes, Mark Holland, Cordell Meeks III, Ann Murguia and Janice Witt. All have confirmed their attendance that evening.
But there are other elections that are just as important for commissioners, BPU board members, school board members, community college trustees as well as mayor and city council members in Bonner Springs and Edwardsville. Contact the Chambers, NBRs and independent business associations for updated information on forums. The Kansas City, Kan., Chamber is listing all forums we learn about on our website: www.kckchamber.com. (Editor’s note: Many forums also are listed on the Wyandotte Daily News website at http://www.wyandottedailynews.com/articles/candidate-forums-scheduled/.)
However, you can’t vote if you are not registered to vote. It is too late for the primary election on Feb. 26, but you may still register for the general election as long as you do so 21 days prior to the election. The general election is April 2.
So, make sure you are registered, know the candidates running to represent you and vote.
Cindy Cash is the president-CEO of the Kansas City, Kan., Area Chamber of Commerce.