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Candidates skip-out on Baker elections forum

Monday, February 27, 2012 - 10:07pm

It's election time in Baker, as propaganda springs up all over yards, just in time for the spring election. A community forum was held Monday for the candidates of both the mayoral and chief of police races.

"Felt like a good way to get the discussion started," said Gabrielle Morgan, who helped organize the event.

But it was a disappointingly low turnout, with only one candidate from each race showing up. Monteic Sizer is one of four candidates for mayor. Frederick Chappell is one of three running for police chief.

"I've noticed things in our city need work on," Morgan said. "It takes a partnership between leaders and community constituents to make things happen."

Of the nearly fifty voters on hand, they said issues facing Baker are high utility bills, improving schools in the district and bringing economic development to their city of nearly 14,000.

"First thing the city needs is a plan," Sizer said. "We've been without an economic development and zoning plans for years."

Sizer says Baker is struggling economically, and promises to work on changing that, if elected.

"We have existing businesses doing everything they can to hold on," Sizer said.

Coming from a background as an ex-state trooper, Frederick Chappell is now running for chief of Baker police. He said safety is first and foremost, before economic development can take hold.

"Have to show the world," Chappell said. "The only way business will come here is if they're comfortable to come here. Knowing families imported here will be safe."

The Baker elections will be held March 24.

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