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Public Faith In SF City Council High

May 1, 2012, 5:59 PM by David Brown

Public Faith In SF City Council High
SIOUX FALLS, SD -

Kermit Staggers will become the newest Sioux Falls city council member later this month, and that's only because Vernon Brown reached his term limit. The other members up for re-election overwhelmingly won their districts in April.

Greg Jamison received 66 percent of the vote in the Southwest District, Dean Karsky received 75 percent in the Northwest district, and Kenny Anderson garnered 78 percent in the Northeast district. And that showcases the public's faith in the council.

When more than 150,000 citizens are under your watch, serving the city of Sioux Falls is no small task.

"We are in front of the firing line every day," Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether said.

"I don't think the public misses a lot," Sioux Falls City Council member Kenny Anderson said. "When they do their studying and their due diligence, they really do know the issues that address them."

And it seems the council's taken on those issues successfully. Anderson, Jamison and Karsky will all be back for another four years after last month's city elections.

"That was a great sign they like the direction our town is heading," Huether said.

Huether knows the public's faith in the council is an indication they need to continue working together as a team.

"We get along really well," Sioux Falls City Council Member Sue Aguilar said. "I think we respect each other's opinions."

But the newest member of the council says he wants the branch to be more assertive. Kermit Staggers has been on the council before and wants to see things change.

"We have to constantly focus on our role as a city council, as an independent branch of city government where we decide the policy independently and we make the best decisions we can," Staggers said.

Nevertheless, with a variety of opinions on how the council should work, members understand that diversity should be accepted.

"We have a tremendous cross-section of the community because we are so different," Sioux Falls City Council member Michelle Erpenbach said. "And I think that is the key to really good, really local government."

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