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Candidates offer one last message for the voters

By Staff | Oct 31, 2009

Editor’s note: Each week, The Breeze will ask candidates for city council their views on an issue of interest to the voters. Each candidate is asked the same question in a phone interview. This week’s question is: What one final issue do you want to emphasize, or clarify, for the voters before election day?

District 6
District 6 candidate John Cataldi, Jr., 69-year-old retired police detective, said he would like for voters to consider the current direction of the city and decide if that is the direction they would like to continue.
“I’m for lower taxes and sensible expansion of utilities,” he said. “Those are the two biggest issues and of course utility rates.”
Kevin McGrail, a 53-year-old medical technologist, also runing in District 6, said voters should consider the candidates’ experience and ability to commit the necessary time a city council position requires.
“There’s no question I can handle the duties of a councilman, just look at my past experience lobbying council,” he said. “The other thing I try to get across is that I have a very flexible schedule and can give the job the attention it requires.”

District 4
Chris Chulakes-Leetz, a 53-year-old USCG-licensed captain, is seeking the District 4 seat. He said the city now has the opportunity to have a council with no ties to any special interest groups.
“Voters can decide if they want to install people that will do the things they have always been done, or go in a different direction,” Chulakes-Leetz said.
Delores Bertolini, 75, who is looking to retain her District 4 seat, said she wants voters to consider her record.
“I’ve always thought of myself as a public servant, not a politician,” she said.

District 1
Jim Martin, a 77-year-old a retired aerospace engineer, is seeking the District 1 seat.
He said the only issue at this point is the economy.
“We need to get people back to work to boost the economy and lower taxes,” he said.
Marty McClain, a 51-year-old construction consultant, also is seeking the District 1 seat.
McClain said the biggest issue facing the city is a misunderstanding of exactly how much a forensic audit of the Utilities Expansion Project will cost the city.
He said similar audits have cost municipalities for more then the $130,000 estimated price tag attached to the UEP and larger project have cost considerably more.
“I have seen the PriceWaterhouseCoopers audit of Montgomery Watson and it cost more in the neighborhood of half a million dollars,” he said.

Mayor’s Race
Mayoral candidate John Sullivan, a 66-year-old retired Broker/IT Consultant, said the issue of fiscal responsibility should be paramount as voters go to the polls on Tuesday.
“I don’t like the way the government has increased the utility tax and the property tax and created a new tax,” he said.
Incumbent Mayor Jim Burch, a 58-year-old land surveyor, said the biggest issue that needs to be addressed is misinformation concerning the city’s finances.
“We have lowered our budget, our staff levels and our per-capita costs to 2006 levels. We have done a good job of being very fiscally conservative,” he said. “People are upset of the millage rate, but that has less to do with the budget and more with the current economy.”
Early voting continues today; the general election is Tuesday.
Cape Coral mayor and city council elections and non-partisan and any registered voter can vote for candidates in any district regardless of where they live.