Zimmerman City Council: Jay Whiting, incumbent

Jay Whiting

Jay Whiting*

Age: 45

Address: 26400 25th St. W

Family: Wife: Cory; Son: AJ

Education: Elk River High School graduate

1. Briefly summarize your personal background and qualifications.

I have served on the Zimmerman City Council for the past four years. I am Chair of the Fire Board and also serve on the Park Board.

2. What are your top three priorities if you are elected?

My top three priorities are as follows:

1. To continue working on getting a sidewalk put in along County Rd 4 from Westwood Elementary to County Rd 45.

2. To make sure the School District follows through on the promises they made to the Zimmerman schools with the referendum.

3. To work to expand the commercial tax base.

3. What is your biggest accomplishment in public life?

Working with Livonia Township to get the Fire Station and Event Center built.

4. What prompted you to run for Zimmerman City Council?

To help Zimmerman grow and become a more respected community.

5. What decision of the Zimmerman City Council have you liked most and why? What decision of the Zimmerman City Council have you liked least?

The best decision I feel the Council has made since I started serving is to move forward with building the Fire Station and Event Center. I also like the decision to approve the tax incentives for Reliance Manufacturing and the new apartment building.

The decision I liked the least was not buying the full 35 acres of property by the new Fire Station. That land could have been used for a new City Hall and public works buildings.  

6. The Zimmerman Fire Hall and Community Center is being built. What role will you play to see that the facility best meets the needs of the fire department and community?

If reelected, I will continue to serve on the Fire Board.

7. How would you rate the level of collaboration and partnership with the Elk River Area School District and Sherburne County? What do you see as opportunities for increased collaboration between either of the two or both?

The City has been working with both the School District and Sherburne County. I think the level of communication has been good, but I will continue working to get them to better understand and provide for the needs of Zimmerman.

8. What experience do you have working with large budgets? What would be your approach to budgeting for the city? What city services would you consider reducing to balance a budget or cover new expenditures deemed necessary or important?

I have been working on the City and Fire District budget for the past four years.

We have been able to keep the City tax rate fairly level and my approach would be to continue so. Our current level of services are good now and with the growth of Zimmerman I do not anticipate that we would need to cut any City services.

9. Highway 169 in Elk River will be converted to a freeway. An effort to get an interchange at Sherburne County Road 4 and Highway 169 has been launched. What should the city’s role be in fostering economic development and quality of life measures in Zimmerman?

I have been adamant about starting an economic development fund to draw more attention to Zimmerman which will improve the tax base. With a higher tax base we will be able to continue improving the parks, be able offer more jobs and could add full time ambulance services in Zimmerman, while keeping the City tax rate level.

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