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Corinth City Hall.

One Corinth City Council member faces a challenger this election cycle, while one other council member and the mayor, Bill Heidemann, are running unopposed.

City Council Place 5 incumbent Don Glockel, who was first elected in May 2015, faces political newcomer Kelly Pickens.

Heidemann was first elected in May 2015 after serving six months as an appointed City Council member in Place 2. Scott Garber, City Council member for Place 2, was also first elected in May 2015.

On the ballot, there’s a proposition to continue the Corinth Crime Control and Prevention District for the next 10 years and to continue to support it with the current CCPD sales tax, maintaining the rate of 0.25% local option sales tax.

The district was formed in 2003, then extended for a 15-year term in 2007.

The organization includes seven members who serve two-year staggering terms to “promote and develop crime reduction programs, strategies and equipment.”

The election is May 4 and early voting kicks off Monday.

We asked Glockel and Pickens, the two candidates in the Place 5 contested race, the same three questions on issues in Corinth.

Don Glockel

Don Glockel

Don Glockel

Age: 72

Born in: Nebraska City, Nebraska

Education: Navy veteran, attended Cooke County Junior College, professional certifications from Southwestern Bell

Employment: Southwestern Bell, 1969-1985; Lake Dallas Telephone (which became Century Link during Glockel’s tenure), 1985-2009

Online: Facebook page coming soon

With Denton County Transportation Authority looking at ways to expand services, what are your views on creating a tax increment reinvestment zone for DCTA in Corinth?

We have met with DCTA, and new taxes aren’t what were looking for right now. We’re trying to build something that’s beneficial for them and us, and we’re looking at a TIF [tax increment financing] where we can fund them from the sales tax instead of having a direct tax imposed against our citizens.

If the studies go well and a rail stop is determined to be the right thing and in the right location, we’ll see if it’s beneficial for Corinth. We know it’d be beneficial for North Central Texas College, and we also have other folks committed to coming into town if we can get a rail stop in the area.

What are you looking for in management of the police and fire departments, given problems in the past?

We’re rated as the 15th safest city in Texas ... and we have a new police chief, but there was really no management issue. The police department has a superior rating, and they were rated by Police Chief Association of Texas for three years in a row.

We’re under a new manager at the fire department and the assistant chief moved up, and they’re doing great. I couldn’t ask for a better police and fire department than what Corinth has today. The police chief search was brought about because of a retirement. I think we’ve done really good at selecting a chief, and everything is going well.

Why do you think you are the better candidate for this position?

I have more experience in city business. I’ve been on council for two terms and there’s a significant learning curve being a councilman, and I’ve had to go through that. I spent a significant amount of time before that working with the city on different projects. In 2000, for instance, I was one of the charter members who wrote the home rule charter from general law; I helped write that policy. That was a long, lengthy process.

Around the same time I served on the first infrastructure review the city did ... to establish the infrastructure basis that we’ve built on every year since. I served for several years on the ethics committee. I’ve been around the city for long time and been active in the city, and I feel like my background is beneficial to the city.

Kelly Pickens

Kelly Pickens

Kelly Pickens

Age: 51 (52 on Saturday)

Born in: Bossier City, Louisiana

Education: attended East Carolina University; 2005 graduate of University of Phoenix with degree in human services

Employment: stay-at-home mother until 2018; diagnostician assistant for special education at Rodriguez Middle School, 2018-present

With Denton County Transportation Authority looking at ways to expand services, what are your views on creating a tax increment reinvestment zone for DCTA in Corinth?

I think we need some form of public transportation. With that, it brings in other services like SPAN [a rural transportation provider that has contracts with other cities to help senior citizens and people with disabilities], and not just a train station. We need other services. I think we definitely need to look into options to make our city more appealing for people to commute and also for NCTC students.

What are you looking for in management of the police and fire departments, given problems in the past?

I think transparency is the most important thing. We also need to keep the departments adequately funded to where we can pay police and firefighters a competitive wage compared to other cities. But to avoid problems, we want transparency. We have a good police and fire department, and we’re the 15th safest city in Texas.

Why do you think you are the better candidate for this position?

I just think the city has been stagnant in some ideas and views, and I think it may be time for a fresh perspective and maybe different ideas, like finding different ways to bring business. We don’t have a great sales tax base, while in our surrounding cities, we’re seeing a lot of quality development like quality retail and businesses going in around us.

We’re kind of the hole in the doughnut with it all going in around us, with us as the hole in the middle. I think it takes a tax burden off the backs of the homeowners since that’s our main source of income — property tax revenue — and we need to offset that to build up sales tax through economic development.

JENNA DUNCAN can be reached at 940-566-6889 and via Twitter at @jennafduncan.

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