The general election will be Tuesday, Nov. 6. Residents will be able to vote for their city election, as well as other state and federal government elections between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Up for election in Hanover are the four-year seats of city councilors Ken Warpula and Jim Zajicek. Filing are incumbents Warpula and Zajicek and Nick Bovee-Gazett.

We asked each candidate to provide information about themselves and the issues they feel are important in the election. The following candidates responded.

Nick Bovee-Gazett

I was born and raised in St. Cloud. I graduated with a B.A in Political Science from SCSU and met my wife, Regan, there during our sophomore year. I’m 30 years old and work as a Senior Analyst for Best Buy in Richfield. Regan and I moved to Albertville in 2013 and made Hanover our home this year. We have two children, Sophia and Jack.

My career experience with Samsung and Best Buy includes managing budgets and teams, bringing together diverse people to solve difficult problems that affect the entire enterprise, and making decisions based on evidence. I think I can bring these skills to the city council to make a positive impact on my community. I have never held or run for public office before but if elected I will work hard for the people of Hanover, genuinely listen to them, and be a pragmatic partner on local issues.

I strongly believe in the role of citizens in making their communities a better place and I have tried to live this value in the past by doing things like organizing athletics programs for low-income youth in St. Cloud. By running for city council I’m hoping to do what I can to keep Hanover a wonderful place to live. I’m also running because I believe that it is important for elections to be competitive at all levels of government.

The central issues facing Hanover today are related to the challenges and opportunities of growth. In order to avoid things like increasing traffic congestion on County Road 19 or potential environmental problems, we need to pursue a mix of policies that help us grow responsibly. I believe this means carefully considering new developments, financial management that keeps property taxes low, and maximum public transparency to build consensus around decisions related to our future growth. Where appropriate, we should partner with other governments and stakeholders to ensure we have the resources to meet our future needs and protect our beautiful environment along the Crow River.

Ken Warpula

I have lived and worked in Hanover since 2001. I have been married for the last 30 years and we have raised our three boys here. I served 20 years in the Minnesota Army National Guard and retired as an E-8, First Sergeant. I have also been serving on the Hanover Fire Dept for the last 16 years and am currently a Captain.

I love our community and the small hometown feel of it. I have enjoyed serving on the City Council the past six years, and hope to continue to serve the residents of Hanover for the next four. Two issues concerning our city that I would like to address in the future are availability of senior housing and the large amount of traffic on our roads. We have seniors who grew up in our community and want to keep living here, but the city has no senior housing available for them to move into.

We need to address our roads with both Hennepin and Wright Counties. The traffic back ups in the morning and evening have been getting worse and worse as the years go by, we need keep being proactive with addressing this issue. We are a bedroom community, and growth is inevitable, but if managed properly, I believe we should be able to keep that small hometown feel. If you ever have questions or concerns about the direction the city is headed, I am available to meet in person or call anytime. 763-242-0898.

Jim Zajicek

My name is Jim Zajicek and I am seeking a second term on the Hanover City Council. My wife Dee and I have lived in Hanover since 2012. My daughter Jenna, her husband Brandon and my two beautiful grandchildren also live in Hanover.

I have a Bachelors Degree in Business from Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. I am currently employed at Great Lakes Coca Cola. I have 22 years sales management experience and 13 years of grocery retail experience.

My business experience brings personal accountability, business acumen, extensive leadership experience, intelligent decision-making skills, strategic thinking, and forward-looking methodology to the council. I am passionate about ethical governing. I want to see local government decisions made to sustain and enhance the residents’ community experience, which includes keeping the essence of the small town feel of Hanover.

Council accomplishments over the last four years include an overall tax reduction of 6%, fiscally responsible budgets eliminated assessments on road improvements, timely projects completed without increasing taxes, built public works building under budget, restoration of historic bridge, provided public busing for Hanover residents (Trailblazers), added two skating rinks to neighborhood parks, and participated in decisions pertaining to staff.

I am grateful for the opportunity to have served and see serving the city as an honor. I have enjoyed being a participant in the planning and governing of our city. As I seek another term, my focus is to serve without any specific agenda other than to provide common sense solutions for our city and be a positive, responsible council member and most importantly to represent the residents of Hanover.

As Hanover continues to grow, careful management and responsible decision-making will be critical in maintaining the small town feel that we all enjoy and love so much.

Important issues facing our city:

Development: New development needs to compliment our City not change it. We need to ask the tough questions and stay true to our comprehensive plan. We all want Hanover to remain the special town we love. I want to be a part of making sure that happens.

Downtown development: I want to be involved in the planning and implementation phases of bringing new businesses to our community.

County Road 19 traffic: The heavy traffic on County Road 19 creates opportunities for our local and future businesses but also represents a burden for daily commuters. Any discussions regarding roads or transportation should include future expansion plans for County Road 19.

Independent Senior Housing: Many of the residents who have lived in the community for most of their lives want to continue to live here as they enter into retirement and begin to downsize. I would like to be part of bringing affordable housing to Hanover for seniors.

Please contact me at jimz@ci.hanover.mn.us if you have any questions.

I appreciate your vote Nov. 6. Together we can work on keeping Hanover the place we enjoy calling home.

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