Get to know your City Council Candidates: Ward 2 Position 1

Ward 2 Posision 1.JPG

I try to be as informed as I can when I vote. I am a big fan of the non-partisan breakdown of the state ballot issues that the UofA puts out each election (link). However, the lower you get on the ballot the hard is is to find information on the issues or candidates. To help everyone make an informed vote, I have asked the same eight questions of each of the Shannon Hills City Council candidates. I will update the below links as I get the other candidates responses.

Ward 1 Position 2 (Unopposed)

Ward 2 Position 1

A little background on the City Council. There are six City Council members who are elected for two year terms. Shannon Hills has three Wards each with two City Council positions. Although they represent a single Ward, all voters of Shannon Hills get to vote on the candidates. Only Ward 2 position 1 will be on the ballot this year, as all other incumbent City Council members are running unopposed. Wilson Hatcher and Keith Andrews have responded to my request for an interview. I will update this article and repost once the Viki Anderson responds.

1. Tell me about yourself

Keith Andrews

I grew up in North Little Rock in the 60's and 70's. My wife Susan and I married in the spring of 1984 and we bought our house on the corner of Shannon Hills drive and Joan Drive from Mr. Wirzfeld that same year. I supported my Family being an automotive technician for Little Rock Water & Waste Water later having my own shop in Shannon Hills before going to work at At&t for the benefits. Sometimes I would make a few extra bucks on the side by working on friends and family vehicles in my driveway because it was expensive raising three daughters.  My two oldest daughters attended Davis elementary when it opened in 1988.  All three of my daughters Krystal (Kristie), Holly and Gina graduated from Bryant High respectively.  I have three grandsons Jacob, Harvin, and Hendrix; I also have three granddaughters Anna, Jami, and Cali that I adore. I love the outdoors.  I took my kids fishing every Sunday after Church when they were little and now I love to go hunting. I love spending time with my family when we can all get together.

Wilson Hatcher

I go to church at fellowship bible church in Little Rock and this spring I will be attending UALR as a junior. I've lived in Shannon Hills my entire life and went to Davis elementary on through Bryant High School, class of 15. I play tennis, make short films, in a band and I also like to help out in the community when I can.


2. Why are you running for City council?

Keith Andrews

I believe the city and local government levels are our most important, as they have the most effect on our day-to- day life.  I currently serve on the Shannon Hills Parks committee, Shannon Hills Planning commission, Shannon Hills Board of Adjustments; running for city council just seemed like the next natural step for me. I plan on living here the rest of my days, and I want to ensure that everyone has a nice safe city to visit. 

Wilson Hatcher

In short the three major reasons being I think we need to improve the streets. More police and raise their pay and lastly I'm concerned about the problem of stray dogs and stray cats and I have personally volunteered with the Saline County Humane Society. Just this past Sunday I volunteered at the low cost shot clinic at Davis Elementary put on by the Saline Humane Society.


3. Why should the voters elect you to the City Council?

Keith Andrews

I feel that I have explained my ties to this community; and when you consider that my youngest grandchildren are at my house almost everyday because my wife is retired from AT&T after a 30 year career and she watches my youngest daughters children, then you understand that the community well being is a top priority for me. I honestly have a deep need for the city to prosper and be safe.

Wilson Hatcher

I'm 22 and there are no strings attached to me. I'm nobody's puppet and I only want to help out this community that raised me in anyway I can! I have nothing to gain from this and it's purely an act of service.


4. What do you believe to be the significant issues facing Shannon Hills, and what is your position on those issues?

Keith Andrews

Our community is one of the fastest growing in the state, because of our quality of life here, our people, our schools and our community safety. Two years in a row we were ranked among the safest in Arkansas. The growth we see creates the need for infrastructure improvements to handle the growing needs such as: improved streets and roads, sidewalks, water and wastewater. The challenge is to meet those needs without going over budget, and without tax increases. My understanding of the budget and the time I have spent attending city council meetings has prepared me to work for our entire community starting day one.

Wilson Hatcher

Besides from what I said previously, I think it's important we put an end to these very frequent car break-ins and there are a couple ways we can go about that. In my neighborhood alone, almost half of the lights don't work at night. Just simple improvements requested by the people to help their everyday life is what I hope to accomplish.


5. In looking at the City’s budget, what components of the budget do you advocate to be increased, and what components do you advocate to be decreased?

Keith Andrews

Our city budget has very little wiggle room. State laws require street money be reserved for streets and the same for water and wastewater.  There are other fund restrictions which leaves only a small fraction of spending that is discretionary. It is important for us to continue to aggressively seek grants to augment our limited resources while protecting taxpayer investments. We must save whenever we can to be prepared for grant opportunities. Some grants such as those for the park and sidewalks require city matching funds. I would like to see our law enforcement budget increased. That money comes from the general fund which has to cover everything besides streets and water, making it a challenge but one I think we can meet. I also love community building events like Fallfest; I think more of them could be good along with an emphasis on neighborhood events which also helps to reduce crime if properly done. I believe our city government should be an asset and an advocate for ALL our people not just a few.

Wilson Hatcher

My goal is to spend money as revenues grow on these priorities that I have mentioned earlier.


6. If you are not elected, what would you do to try to help work on ideas or issues that are important to you?

Keith Andrews

If I am not elected I will continue to stay active in the community by going to city council meetings when I can. I also want to stay active by staying on the Shannon Hills Parks committee, the Shannon Hills board of adjustments, Shannon Hills planning commission. Which I am a member of all three currently.  

Wilson Hatcher

I'd continue to work with the humane society and speak out once more about the issues that are important for Shannon Hills.


7. Do you believe that the City should notify residents of important issues and proposed changes to City ordinances to come before the Town Council? If so, what mechanism should be used to solicit residents’ comments and to report the City Council actions to residents?

Keith Andrews

I think it is extremely important for the residents to be notified of all proposed changes of their city.  I would not be opposed to adopting a texting notification system like the pubic schools currently have.  Signing up to receive the notifications would be voluntary, and we could send out city reminders about city council meetings that are always open to the public.

Wilson Hatcher

Yes we should certainly get emails on important matters and if anything, every resident in Shannon Hills deserves to be informed. I would not be opposed to it!


8. Do you have a Facebook page or other way that a citizens could learn more about you and your positions on issues?

Keith Andrews

My personal email is jakar2004@sbcglobal.net I will do my best answering questions about my positions on city issues.

Wilson Hatcher

No I do not have a facebook page but I suppose I do have a good place for them to look at some of my positions now assuming they are reading this. Here is my cell number 501-920-5084 and I'd love to answer any questions and visit with anyone personally! Thank you for giving me this platform to give the residents of Shannon Hills insight on my campaign!