7 candidates running for 3 open seats on the Chelsea City Council
Chelsea’s crowded race for City Council is the largest in many years, with seven people running for three open seats.
On the ballot are the three incumbents, Rod Anderson, Bill Holmberg and Kent Martinez-Kratz. Challengers Erin Brayton, Indira Ghosh, Harry (Jack) Myers and Marcia Parker also are running for the four-year terms.
Here’s what they had to say:
Family: Married to Nancy. Three grown children: Rebecca, Jocelyn, and Owen.
Profession: Retired from remote sensing research and development in the aerospace/defense industry and from the US Navy in the grade of captain.
Education: Mount St. Joseph H.S. (Baltimore, MD) 1963, University of West Florida - B.S., Physics (summa cum laude) 1971, The Johns Hopkins University- M.A., Physics 1976, The Johns Hopkins University- Ph.D., Physics 1980, flight training 1965-1967, various other operational and staff military courses 1969-1990
Previous elected office: Chelsea City Council, 2007-2011, Chelsea Precinct Delegate, current and various terms since 1992
Current Public and Community Service: Chelsea Area Fire Authority Board of Trustees.
City government must continue to move toward more constrained governance. Unconstrained government leads to over spending and thus higher taxes than necessary. Other consequences include lack of accountability and transparency, limited community involvement, lack of validated priorities and poor long-term planning.
The city has made strides in becoming more efficient and transparent in the past four years, so the basis is present for truly efficient and responsive government if these goals can be carried out. “The obvious way to reform government is to bring fresher voices to the table through the election process. The number of candidates in the current cycle is a healthy sign of community concern. Any progress must continue through a complete election cycle, though.
As a consequence of its view of government, the council majority has demonstrated a poorly implemented decision process. An example from the last term is the decision to build the police station in spite of community concerns with its size and design, location and the timing of the build.
Among upcoming major decisions is DDA's plan for developing the Palmer property as an attraction, or more generally, to what extent should additional public funds be allocated to remaking Chelsea as a tourist destination? “Fiscal conservatives will continue to be in the minority after this election. So we must rely on argument and persuasion of the majority to achieve any changes in governance. For example, members should put forward arguments to support formal decision processes that consider alternatives, conduct cost and benefit analysis, include quantitative evaluation criteria, and prioritize goals. This decision process must be applied to upcoming major choices such as the Palmer property development.”
Family: Married with a 19-month-old son
Profession: Small business owner Education: Hartland High School, 2000; Michigan State University, BS Apparel and Textile Design 2004; currently enrolled at Eastern Michigan University, working toward a Master's of Accounting.
No previous elected offices.
No current public or community service listed
Representation for young families. “When addressing issues, I will take into account the needs and wishes of families with young children. I will focus on maintenance and refurbishment of public parks and the creation of community events that are aimed toward infants, toddlers and young children.”
Accountability. “I will make certain that the residents of Chelsea have their issues addressed in a timely and respectful manner.”
Family: Married to Amitabh Ghosh; three children, Aparna, 20, Adarsh, 17, Ananth, 12,
Profession: President of Ghosh Consulting LLC Education: High school, June 1975 from Balila, a village near Mangalore, Karnataka State, India, B.Sc. - Physics, Chemistry, Math, June, 1978, SDM College, near Mangalore, Karnataka State, India, M.Sc. - Physics, June, 1981, SP University, Vallabh Vidya Nagar, Gujarat, India, M.S. Physics, August 1988, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, M.S. Computer Engineering, December 1990, Wayne State University, Detroit.
No previous elected experience since college.
Current public and community service: SRSLY
Taxed Enough with Taxes: The residents of Chelsea are getting hit by new taxes through special assessments such as the special assessment in Chelsea Fairways for building roads and sidewalks, which should be funded by the city. It is a moral responsibility of any developer to pay for this. A thorough analysis should have been done and the information should be made available to the public.
Financial accountability and transparency is the key for the city to move forward. The city website should show the funds' expenditures and incomes with a click of a button.”
Keep it Local: Keep it local to improve quality of life, in the last 9+ years at Chelsea I have noticed the quality of life is deteriorating. There's a lack of law and order, road and general safety of the citizens. We need more jobs at Chelsea. “Bring back jobs to Chelsea. I have already begun a start-up company as of July with the intention of creating jobs.”
Candidate: William (Bill) Holmberg, (I)
Chose not to return his answers to the questions.
Family: Wife, Marina; three children ages 8, 13, 14,
Profession: Special education teacher
Education: Novi High School; Bachelor of Science, Michigan State University; Master’s Degree, Eastern Michigan University
Current pubic and community service: Chelsea City Council 2005-2011, Chelsea City Council school liaison, Chelsea Recreation board member.
Continuing Chelsea's family focus. “I believe keeping a positive relationship between the city and the Chelsea schools is important. I enjoy promoting the Chelsea Recreation as an essential ingredient in our community.”
Maintaining fiscal responsibility. “On City Council, I have worked to ensure that Chelsea maintains strong levels of service without increasing costs. I have voted against all millage increases.”
Family: Married for 31 years; two daughters, ages 22 and 15, and have lived in Chelsea for 27 years.
Profession: Retired from the United States Marine Corps, at the rank of captain. I was a finance, accounting and auditing officer for the Marines. I also retired from my position as village manager, Village of Chelsea.
Education: Graduated from high school in 1962; Coastal Carolina College, while in the service; extensive professional development at the Department of Defense Computer Institute, Marine Corps Institute; advanced training in fiscal accounting, professional development training classes through the Michigan Municipal League.
Previous elected office: 1990, elected to the Chelsea Village Council, where I served the residents of Chelsea as a council trustee for approximately 1 1/2 years before being appointed to the position of village manager, a position I held for 12 years.
Current public and community service: Member American Legion Post 31, Marine Corps Association, Military Officers Association of America.
I want to be the voice of the residents and the representative of the people who live in the City of Chelsea. “Being retired, I have the time and availability to devote to this position.”
Financial responsibility for the city. “I have 17 plus years of municipal government experience and knowledge to best serve the people and fiscal health of Chelsea.”
Family: Married to Larry H. Parker; adult child, Trevor.
Profession: Realtor with Real Estate One Dexter, part-time U of M School of Nursing, research associate Education: Ann Arbor Huron High School 1970; real estate license, 1990; graduate Real Estate Institute, 1993; Accredited Buyers Agent 1994 (ABR); Real Estate Broker License, 1998; Real Estate Certified Residential Specialist, 1999 (CRS); Real Estate Certified Residential Broker, 2000 (CRB). No previous elected office.
Current public and community service: Chelsea Planning Commission, Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce, Quiet Creek Condo Association Board of Directors, Chelsea Senior Center Board of Directors, election official since 2009, volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, Re Store, Chelsea District Library 2009 assist with technology classes.
Responsible Fiscal Government. “Continue the fine work the city is currently doing to keep costs of operating the city in check.”
Continue making Chelsea a destination for new business. “Make Chelsea a destination for new business by entertaining tax abatement's if necessary to make us an option. Try to fill some of our open business spaces by working with new business and start-ups, if possible to increase our tax revenues.”