Candidates to talk politics

Oak Creek, Hayden hopefuls gather at tonight's forums

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— Oak Creek and Hayden voters will have a chance to get to know their town board and mayoral candidates a little better tonight.

Each town is hosting a candidates forum at 7 p.m. at its town hall. Most candidates are expected to attend the events.

"This is just a great opportunity for the voters to really make a well-informed choice on April 4," Oak Creek Town Clerk Karen Halterman said Wednesday.

In Oak Creek, candidates will have two minutes to in----troduce themselves and talk about their campaign platforms. The forum moderator then will ask candidates questions written down by audience members.

The forum could last two hours.

"I hope that it will provide voters with a better basis for their selections," Halterman said. "There's a lot of issues in town that perhaps the public isn't aware of only because you have to participate to really know what's going on."

Oak Creek mayoral candidates are incumbent Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman and Bill Babcock. Town Board candidates are incumbents Tom Bleuer, John Crawford and J. Elliott, and Ann Kirton, Kelly Lipsie, Angie Kralj KenCairn, Dave Fisher, Chuck Wisecup and Stacy Hayes.

The three Town Board candidates who receive the most votes will serve four-year terms. The candidate with the fourth-most votes will serve a two-year term.

Hayden's candidates forum also is at 7 p.m. Candidates were given a list of questions to be asked by a moderator during the forum. Audience members also will be allowed to ask questions, time permitting. The forum's structure will be:

n A two-minute opening statement from each candidate.

n Ninety-second responses to a series of questions asked by the moderator.

n One-minute responses to questions from audience members. The number of questions from the audience will be limited. Candidates can address additional questions and meet with audience members after the forum.

n Two-minute closing statement from each candidate.

Hayden's mayoral and Town Board races also are contested.

The two candidates for mayor are former mayor Rich--ard "Festus" Hagins and current Town Board trustee Joe Schminkey.

Four candidates are running for three Town Board seats. They are former trustee Jim Haskins, Mayor Chuck Grobe, Tom Rogalski and Andrea Hayden. Rogalski and Hayden are Hayden planning commissioners.

-- To reach Matt Stensland, call 871-4210

or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

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