Here in Henderson, I've been talking with neighbors. And while many do seem ready to vote, others forgot that Henderson has municipal elections every odd year (though that may change in the not-too-distant future). For all we know, it may be a small pool of a few thousand Henderson voters that ultimately determine our next City Council Member in Ward 4.
So of course, we're seeing the mail. So far, as you can see above, I've only been receiving positive pro-candidate mailers. I even got a letter from a neighbor in support of Sam Bateman! I thought that was a nice touch.
However, there is a clear choice in this election... And both candidates aren't hesitating to air out those differences.
The last two men standing in the race for Henderson's Ward IV City Council seat have no shortage of experience.
The type and amount of experience that each one considers relevant to the seat that will be decided in the General Election on June 7, however, has emerged as the dividing issue in the campaign.
In many ways, that was to be expected, what with the race pitting former police chief Mike Mayberry - a 29-year veteran of the Henderson Police Department - against the younger Sam Bateman, a Clark County prosecutor and chairman of the Henderson Planning Commission. [...]
"I think I'll bring a new perspective," Bateman said. "Being somebody who's not been in city government for a long time, I can bring a fresh perspective, look at things in a different way and ask questions that other people wouldn't ask." [...]
"I think I'm in a better position, day one going forward, based on the type of issues we deal with on the Planning Commission that are going on in the city right now, to hit the ground running on day one and move forward," Bateman said. "... I think we just need to turn the page, and that's what I represent."
[Mike] Mayberry said he feels a deep connection to the city that has come from the decades in which he has lived and worked in it.
"I truly believe in that old axiom that 'People don't really care how much you know until they know how much you care,'" he said. "I truly want us to be the premiere city in Southern Nevada and I think that with my experience, my background and my being a fiscal conservative, I can help get us there."
Already, we're hearing certain buzzwords and catchy phrases get tossed around, such as "long time", "fiscal conservative", "fresh perspective", and "turn the page". Mayberry has been in Henderson government longer than I've been alive, while Bateman is the "new kid on the block". Bateman isn't afraid to critique past city budget decisions and development plans, while Mayberry boasts of his "institutional knowledge" and support from key local power players.
Mayberry has been endorsed by Mayor Andy Hafen, former County Commissioner Bruce Woodbury, "kingmaker" Sig Rogich, and a few others. However, Bateman isn't without his own key supporters. Current County Commissioners Mary Beth Scow and Steve Sisolak, along with outgoing City Council Member Steve Kirk (this vacated seat is the one we're talking about), and the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce and Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, have endorsed Bateman. For what was supposed to be a sleepy local election, there's a whole lot of star power popping in now!
So what is this election about? And why should we care? Remember, local government is the government we see, feel, talk to, pay, and experience most of the time. Municipal elections may not seem as "sexy" as a big ticket Presidential race, but they are the elections that determine the kind of government we actually deal with every day.
So hopefully, turn out will be better than many are expecting as people realize there is an election starting this weekend (as early voting starts Saturday!) and they need to make up their minds. Before I get into further details on my own thoughts on Henderson Ward 4, I just wanted to make sure anyone else here doesn't forget that we need to vote soon. ;-)