Vaughan seeks to invest in city's infrastructure
Editor's note: This Q&A is part of a series highlighting Hastings City Council candidates. Find the rest of the story here.
- Age: 49
- Address: 1550 Stonegate Road, Hastings, MN 55033
- Website: www.vaughanforhastings.com
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/mark4Hastings
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/vaughanforhastings
- Education: Minnesota State College, Southeast
- Family: Wife, Beth — Daughters Mary, Martha and Molly
- Occupation: Facility Manager, City of Eagan
- Civic Involvement: At-large City Council member, Hastings United Way board member, St. Philip's Lutheran Church member.
What experience and talents would you bring to the at-large council position?
I am the current chair of Hastings' finance, planning and transit committees. My daily work with the City of Eagan for the past 23 years has given me extensive experience with overall budget knowledge and in particular operating budgets.
As a Hastings council member, I have worked to help stabilize the water and sewer funds, hold the city's bond rating at AA, and have assisted in lowering property owners tax rate. I currently represent the city on the Economic and Housing Authority and act as the acting mayor when needed. My dedication to serving Hastings is to make good decisions for every corner of the city. No area is more important than another.
What differentiates you from other candidates in this election?
I have four years of experience in setting and interpreting policy which has helped me discover the value of establishing a forward vision for Hastings. Prior to serving on the council, I gave 12 years of volunteer service as a member on the planning, park and recreation, and charter commissions. This experience provided a solid background for my elected position on the City Council. I am also fortunate to work for the City of Eagan which has given me the perspective of realistic goals and budgets for city services.
Beth and I have raised three daughters in this community, which has given us a chance to connect with many residents from whom we have listened, learned and been able to implement new ideas and concepts.
What would be your top priority as an at-large councilmember?
My continued top priority will be to maintain Hastings' current assets. I feel a responsibility to take care of what residents already call their investment. I also intend to exercise long-range visioning in my decision making. I want to help model our city for future generations through wise infrastructure investment, a vibrant downtown and supporting shopping areas, occupied storefronts and well maintained open spaces for the health and well-being of our residents. This would all come under the umbrella of excellence in city services and population growth.
How do you plan on handling housing issues within the city?
My intent is to be sensitive to the need for safe and respectful housing for the full spectrum of our community. What is equally important is creating a climate where developers can create new and beautiful housing for growing families as well as retirees seeking housing models that suit their needs. Good housing options become a "welcome mat" for prospective residents. I will strive to be the eyes, ears and conscience for Hastings at-large in its quest for good housing options at all levels.