Fairfield Ledger
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Neighbors Growing Together | Apr 24, 2014

Flournoy wins run-off election

By ANDY HALLMAN | Dec 04, 2013
Douglas Flournoy

Douglas Flournoy will replace Connie Boyer on the Fairfield City Council after defeating Patrick Bosold in a run-off election Tuesday.

The election was extremely tight with Flournoy capturing 51 percent of the ballots cast, or 557 votes. Bosold received 530 votes. The figures are unofficial results from the Jefferson County Auditor’s Office.

Flournoy won the run-off election for the at-large seat after finishing second to Bosold on the Nov. 5 ballot when Bosold received 535 votes (44 percent) to Flournoy’s 469 votes (39 percent).

The Nov. 5 election saw five candidates vie for the city council seat. Other candidates receiving votes were Andrew Perry with 89, Richard Walbaum with 49 and Will Richards with 44.

Flournoy said he believed the supporters of the other three candidates would likely vote for Bosold, so his strategy to win the run-off was to knock on as many doors as he could to increase the turnout from the prior election. He spent 12 hours this past weekend going door-to-door to ask Fairfield residents for their vote, and it paid off. He increased his vote total by 88 votes from the Nov. 5 election.

The main issue he heard about when he knocked on doors was property taxes. Flournoy said he sympathized with residents’ desire to keep city property taxes low. When he was a school board member, he felt the board kept the property tax levy as low as possible.

His 12 years of experience on the school board was a major talking point during his campaign. He stressed his history of coming to a consensus with a group of individuals who sometimes started with different positions.

Another thing that Flournoy spoke about often was the need to make long-term plans for the upkeep of infrastructure. He said the city needs to plan not just five or 10 years into the future but 30 or 40 years. Additionally, the city needs to remember once it constructs infrastructure, whether it’s roads, sewer lines, or a new building, it must set aside money to maintain it.

Flournoy said he thought the current council was going a good job and that he was not aware of egregious waste of taxpayer money. However, he did hear from constituents who objected to the city council allotting $3 million for the pool and gym project.

“People wondered why we would put $3 million into a pool when the sewer lines aren’t paid for. They have a good point,” Flournoy said.

Other constituents told him they didn’t like the city spending money on cosmetic fixes such as beautifying the downtown. Flournoy said he was in favor of making the downtown look nice if the projects were paid for by outside grants.

“I don’t think we should spend a lot of money on adding beautification that doesn’t address needs of community,” he said.

Flournoy said his campaign focused on explaining his own positions rather than contrasting them with Bosold’s. He said he and Bosold did not attack each other and that the two of them ran positive campaigns.

Bosold called Flournoy Tuesday night to congratulate him on his victory. In an email sent to The Ledger, Bosold wrote, “Doug ran a vigorous race and he deserved to win. I’m sure he will be a fine public servant as Fairfield’s new at-large city council member.”

Bosold thanked The Ledger for its coverage of the candidates during the campaign. He agreed with Flournoy’s assessment that it was a positive campaign.

“If every election in Iowa and the U.S. was run as this one was, we’d have a much more equitable election process and a healthier, more robust democracy,” he wrote. “I encourage all Fairfield citizens to maintain their interest in Fairfield’s post-election governance. It will be as good as we make it. We need to keep paying attention to make it great. As Thomas Jefferson so eloquently put it, ‘The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.’”

 

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