The June 12 city election will see five candidates vying for two City Commissioner seats vacated by George Dutton and Jon Wagar. This week, the T-R will interview all five candidates to provide a better look at those seeking office and their take on the issues facing Valley City. Going alphabetically, the third interviewee is candidate Arthur Friese.
Occupation: Currently employed at Pizza Corner, has held the position for five years
Education: VCHS graduate
Family: Wife Ashley, two kids and one on the way
Organizations: Treasurer of Community Action Headstart
Why do you want to be a City Commissioner? “I always felt interested in it. My grandpa has been a city commissioner, and he told me to go for it. I’d like to make the city stronger, and I think the roads should be done better.”
What are the three biggest issues facing Valley City? “Flood protection and street repair, and how they assess the repairs.”
What issues do you hope to address on the commission?
“Definitely the streets and repairing some of the things they’ve talked about for several years, like the Rosebud parking lot. I’d like to get that going.”
Post-election, what kind of tone would you set with your colleagues at City Hall and your fellow citizens?
“I don’t like how they treat some of the people, with people getting kicked out of meetings. I think everybody should be able to voice their opinion without getting told to sit down or be quiet. I think we should listen to everybody, what they have to say in the community.”
How would you best handle the streets or police/fire portfolios (vacated by Commissioners Dutton and Wagar)?
“I would have to take a little more time off of work, but my boss told me he’d work around that. At home, Ashley’s home during the day, so that part won’t be a problem.”
How would you handle the time commitment of being on the commission?
“Probably the street department, because I did (road) construction for several years with Border States Paving, so I know how that works.”
Past experience with city government:
“I haven’t been to any City Commission meetings, but I’ve watched the replays on TV. I’ve volunteered for the city with the School-to-Work program, but nothing with the city commission.”