Four years ago, as Manitowoc faced challenges not seen in generations, I came to you with a plan that
I believed would help us right the ship and lead our city in a new direction.
You’ve given me a tremendous honor in electing me to serve as your Mayor. I’m proud to come to you and tell that I believe I have fulfilled the commitment I made and proven my leadership.
Four years ago I promised that under my leadership we would: reduce the debt, create an environment that fosters job growth, and create a more open and transparent government. Four years later I can tell you that unemployment has dropped from 14% to 8%, with more than 300 of those jobs coming from projects that the city was an invested partner in. We have paid off more debt than we have incurred annually, and I have implemented a debt reduction plan that cuts our debt in half by 2018. Most importantly, we’ve put our fiscal house back in order and ushered in an era of honest, transparent and responsible budgeting.
The last four years haven’t been easy, but we’ve made progress. There is much more to be done and I hope to tackle those issues over the next four years.
If re-elected I promise to continue my track record of responsible budgeting and cut our debt in half by 2018. I will work to strategically reinvest in the quality of life issues that have made us the 2nd Best Small City to raise a family, twice, and that will grow the tourism economy that we rely on. Further, I promise to aggressively assess opportunities to more cost-effectively provide services through partnerships with neighboring communities.
I’m humbled to be able to ask for the opportunity to continue our work. I appreciate your support on April 2nd.
This election is for my Grandpa, Art Nickels, who passed away on January 9th, 2013 – my 26th birthday. Grandpa Nickels was my biggest fan. You would always see him at the campaign headquarters in the 2009 election (this photo was taken on election night 2009 after I won), at most events that I attended throughout my first term, or eating breakfast at Perkins with Grandma Nickels.
Grandpa was an inspiration to many, especially to me. He was a fire fighter for the City of Manitowoc for 37 years, retiring in 1987 as the Deputy Chief. He was a musician and played for a plethora of groups throughout his life. Just recently he was inducted into the Wisconsin Polka Hall of Fame. He loved his Lord, his Family and his Community.
While Grandpa Nickels is no longer with us, his spirit remains. Win or lose this election, I know he would be proud of me. I’m a better person now for knowing him and Heaven is a better place now for having him.
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