Wade Schwartzand Jim Berrios are running for city council position no. 2, and Bailey Stober and Ken Sharp
are running for city council position no. 4.
Three of the candidates, Schwartz, Berrios and Sharp
, are Kent
business owners, but all four candidates spoke about the importance of balancing the city budget and focusing on economic development.
said the city continues to look to small businesses to make up budget shortfalls.
"We need to be supportive of businesses...we can't use them as a cash cow," Sharp
Sharp, an active member of the Kent Chamber and Kent Downtown Partnership, is the owner of Minute Man Press in Kent.
was recently arrested on seven counts of first-degree theft for allegedly stealing $297,500 from his
mother's bank account.
plead not guilty to charges in August.
Schwartz, who owns Blanc 'n Schwartz salon on Meeker St., wants Kent
to continue its branding through the Kent Chamber and Kent Downtown Partnership
, to condense the railroad tracks in downtown Kent over a five to 20 year period, to think outside the box in terms of revenue streams and to drop the ban on marijuana.
Berrios, owner of the Golden Steer and the current president of the Kent Chamber, said Kent is not perceived as business friendly.
Another hot topic of the debate was homelessness in Kent
was glad that the Kent Resource Center
as a possible homeless site prompted businesses and the community to talk about the issue.
wants to see a focus on homeless women and children.
Schwartz also supports the work of Kent
HOPE and wants to be sure that we address all populations of the homeless in Kent.
Berrios, who has actively worked to research and address the homeless issue in Kent
, said, "As a Christian and a human, we have a moral obligation to not ignore this issue."
While the candidates did not agree on several issues, the debates were polite and the candidates focused on their individual visions for the future of Kent
Safe, family trick-or-treating at Kent Station
in downtown Kent
along with a costume contest.
Prizes will be awarded for best individual and group costumes.