Baker, MacKenzie vie for 9th District votes for councilFive Superior City Council seats are open when voters head to the polls, but only one incumbent city councilor is facing a challenge on the ballot during the April 3 election.
By: Shelley Nelson, Superior Telegram
Five Superior City Council seats are open when voters head to the polls, but only one incumbent city councilor is facing a challenge on the ballot during the April 3 election.
Councilor Mick MacKenzie, who first won his seat four years ago running a write-in campaign against longtime Councilor Dennis Dalbec, is hoping to serve the people of Billings Park for a third term as he faces a challenge from district resident Bonnie Baker.
Baker, who is giving up a seat on the school board this spring is hoping to bring her experience to the city as a whole.
“As a city councilor, I will bring experience with budgets, setting policies and communication,” Baker said. “I know how to listen to people. I thoroughly understand the need to keep our economy strong by creating a positive business climate, which will encourage new businesses and new jobs.”
In recent months, MacKenzie has been among a unanimous council who supported agreements that open the doors for Kestrel Aircraft Co. to come to Superior, and help Magnetation LLC continue its exploration of building a $300 million hematite manufacturing facility in the Parkland Industrial Park.
The latter company has not made a decision about where it will locate. Other sites being considered are Itasca County, Minn., and Indiana.
MacKenzie, a lifelong Superior resident who retired as a clerk and control operator with Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railroad, said people in his district who motivate him to continue.
“The strong admiration and special bond I have with the 9th District and its residents is very inspirational and motivates in me a desire to continue this journey that started back in April of 2008,” said MacKenzie. “What I hope to accomplish is what I have already started and have utilized, which is a commonsense approach to good city and county relations. This team effort concept will go a long way to continue to attract new business to the city and county alike and will give our youth reason to stay, work and raise a family in our community.”
For the city, the most pressing issue is the economy and jobs, Baker said.
“I want to help the city of Superior grow and prosper by doing what I can to encourage businesses to create jobs,” she said. “I understand the need for new … and growing businesses, small and large, which will create more jobs, as well as broaden our tax base. I am prepared to focus on this issue as a priority.”
However, she said, there are also priorities in the district itself that require attention, such as the safety of children and drivers on some streets in the district, water drainage issues, new roads and street lights in certain areas of the district, and safety issues “unique to the far western area of the district.”
Baker said she’s prepared to work with district residents to be a “true representative” by following through with their concerns. As a longtime volunteer, she said she’s prepared to put in the hours needed to address the issues 9th District residents raise.
“In my employment, I was conscientious and thorough, had excellent follow-through and still continue with these traits today in my work with organizations,” said Baker, who spent 35 years working for the School District of Superior as a speech and language pathologist.
During MacKenzie’s tenure on the council, working with residents battling flooded basements and other issues have been a priority for him.
“During my four years on the city council, I believe I have established a strong connection with the residents of my district,” he said. “I have worked closely with and for them …,” MacKenzie said. “I feel I have the ability to listen closely and evaluate each concern before looking for an answer or a resolution for each and every problem or issue.”