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Warthan seeks District 1 re-election

By AARON KENNEDY - akennedy@ftimes.com

Clarence Warthan is in the midst of his first re-election campaign after being appointed by caucus to the District 1 seat on the Frankfort City Council back in June of 2015 and then running unopposed five months later in the election.

Wathan says he is proud of what the council has accomplished in the nearly four years since his appointment.

“I would like to continue what we have done,” Warthan said. “I think the city is moving in the right direction. We are investing in our city with dollars that do not affect property taxes, and I am proud that our property taxes have not gone up – that includes Prairie Creek Park as well as maybe the pool if it comes about and the Old Stoney restoration was (also) a part of that. Prairie Creek Park and Old Stoney are the only ones we have bonds for at this point, and the rest (of the projects) are still in planning. And we are not going to raise property taxes to pay for the rest of the plans we are looking at.”

Warthan says he would like to update all city parks in the future.

“In terms of quality of place, I think parks are one of the few amenities that we have, so I would really like to continue to spruce them up and add recreational equipment for families and to just make them look nice. We have really increased our parks budget over the last four years, and that has been good because we are able to do more projects for the park. I know my opponent (Gena Carson) brought adaptive equipment to our attention, and I supported that. We found some money and put some in Luther Howe Park. I really wanted to update all the city parks.”

Warthan says he is proud of the way the city council has kept a balanced budget.

“We have never gone over on our city budget except for on city health insurance once when we had one bad year,” he said. “But that was the only time in the four years that I have been on the council. Most of the time, we have not spent all of our money, and we had a surplus.

“We watch our budget very closely,” he continued. “That is why I am concerned about why (some critics) think we are in debt. I don’t understand their reasoning behind it. I know we are bonding projects, but I know that we have the money coming in to pay for those things. They act like we are putting it on a credit card and we don’t know where the money is going to come from. We are investing in our city. And I think we need to continue to invest in our city and help it grow. We are trying to meet the needs of everybody, and not just a few. I am proud of that.”

An educator for 45 years (41 at Frankfort High School), Warthan is an Elder at Oakland Christian Church where he also teaches Sunday school. He has volunteered on five disaster relief missions through Samaritan’s Purse, and he is working with Jail Ministries of Clinton and Carroll Counties.

“I have learned to love this community,” Warthan said. “I have enjoyed serving the people here, and I would like to continue for another four years if I can.”