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Rigby mayoral race heats up

By Christina Jensen
Published On: Oct 21 2013 07:23:44 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 22 2013 01:21:36 PM CDT

The turmoil in the Rigby city government is one reason two mayoral candidates said they are running for office.

RIGBY, Idaho -

The turmoil in the Rigby city government is one reason two mayoral candidates said they are running for office. Joe Sites and Jason Richardson are going head-to-head. They both agree that there is a huge issue of people not trusting some city employees. Both men want to see that change. They're also concerned with Rigby City attorney and County Prosecutor Robin Dunn.

"Our city attorney, Robin Dunn, is grossly overpaid. He is over-involved in everything from the city to the county. The City Council needs to stand alone on their own and not be counseled by every decision by the city attorney," said Sites.

"I have been told he has done criminal things but when asked what are the criminal things I received some information that looks like it could be unethical but that is what we need to look at. How much criticism, how much negativity does a city need to pull in for a particular employee, before it says 'OK, look what is best for the city'?" said Jason.

Sites said his main platform is running an audit of the records and an investigation into certain employees. But there are other things he wants to see changed, such as converting the Rigby Junior High School.

"What I envision is having the City Council in there, city offices, city library and the Jefferson arts council and we could have an art gallery in here," Sites said.

He also is looking at having more festivals and a public swimming pool. He said the projects can be done through fundraising events and grants. Sites is a retired sheet metal worker and project manager. His opponent, Richardson, is a teacher in Idaho Falls and has lived in Rigby for 12 years. One of his main focuses is city employees.

"I really believe that we are city servants and you can't take a top-down approach. There has to be an understanding and consideration of what people are offering and criticizing," Richardson said.

He said by doing this he may be able to fix the grief some people have with the city government. Richardson also wants to lower the city bill.

"What are the things we can do to move our city forward at a smaller expense and that is my plan with looking at the budget," he said. One way he wants to do that is by having more community volunteer projects.

If you want to see these two go head-to-head a public forum will be held Wednesday at 7 p.m. The forum will be at the senior center in Rigby.

Dunn said as far as Sites' allegations to the amount of money he makes, he said before he became city attorney the salary was twice as much as it is now. He also said he doesn't have a problem not being in the City Council meetings.

Election night is Nov. 5.

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