[Masthead] Fair ~ 45°F  
Freeze Warning
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014

Q&A with City Council Ward 2, Position 2 candidates

Friday, September 21, 2012

(Photo)
Parker Raphael
PARKER RAPHAEL

Ward 2/Position 2,

Eureka Springs City Council

Parker Raphael, 63, has lived in Eureka Springs for 20 years, and is retired from the City of Green Forest water department. Originally from Syracuse, N.Y., he has a B.A. from State University of New York. Raphael was appointed to the City Council when Janet Alexander resigned last year. This is the first time that Raphael has run for an elected office.

1. What are your reasons for running?

I don't want to see uncontested council positions. I'm still looking for answers to our infrastructure problems.

2. What are your priorities and goals once you are in office, if you are elected?

Cooperation, civility, and getting the business of the city done.

3. Do you have any personal ties, such as children and/or relatives or close friends who work for the city, or have you worked there yourself?

No.

4. How do you feel about public participation at City Council meetings? Should the public be allowed to ask questions or give a response during each topic's discussion or be confined only to the public comment portion at the start of a meeting?

I would not mind an additional time at the end of the meeting. The meetings are too long already. Comments during the meeting would be too distracting.

5. What is the most admirable thing about the City Council to you? What is the least admirable, and something you believe should change?

Eventually they will stop talking. The lack of civility and respect.

6. Where do you stand on the deer hunt?

I will always support the citizen's vote.

7. Where do you stand on the taxi vs. limo debate?

I agree with our city attorney, that the two need to be separated legally.

8. How do you think the City Council should deal with the upkeep and/or replacement of aging infrastructure -- sewer system, sidewalks, etc. -- and how should the City pay for it?

It is a big problem that will require a gradual long term plan. Unfortunately, it will have to be paid for by the citizens and businesses that use it. What form that will take is up for discussion.

(Photo)
Dee Purkeypile
DEE PURKEYPILE

Ward 2/Position 2,

Eureka Springs City Council

Dee Purkeypile graduated from Texas Tech University with a degree in Soil and Water Conservation Engineering. He worked with the State of Texas Dam Safety program for 15 years, with the last five years as the senior engineer in hydraulic and hydrology. Moving to the engineering corporate private sector for 10 years as a principal engineer, he designed new dams and improvements to existing dams. He formed Purkeypile Consulting two years ago where he continues to provide detailed engineering assessment and analysis of dams and FEMA 100-year floodplain issues, as well as plans and specifications for new and existing dams. Purkeypile has worked with many small cities across Texas to address engineering issues. He lived in Lubbock, Tex., for 25 years, Austin, Tex., for 25 years and Eureka Springs the past four years.

1. What are your reasons for running?

I have been asked by several citizens to run for council. I agreed to do so after establishing my private engineering consulting business for two years. I have previously provided engineering assistance to Public Works as a means of contributing to the welfare of the City of Eureka Springs. Sitting on Council would be another form of public service.

2. What are your priorities and goals once you are in office, if you are elected?

Infrastructure is my primary concern. I would like to see a three- to five-year plan in place to identify needed areas of repair and improvement. The plan would prioritize the repairs and improvements with the final goal being implementation of the plan on an incremental basis. Taken as a whole, the issue of infrastructure appears daunting and the city can essentially find itself paralyzed by the inability to financially accomplish the tasks all at once. Breaking up the tasks into discrete, prioritized projects can start that process.

3. Do you have any personal ties, such as children and/or relatives or close friends who work for the City, or have you worked there yourself?

I know many of the city staff. I have never worked for the city.

4. How do you feel about public participation at City Council meetings? Should the public be allowed to ask questions or give a response during each topic's discussion or be confined only to the public comment portion at the start of a meeting?

The public has a chance to read the agenda prior to signing up to speak. If there is a concern regarding a particular agenda item, it can be voiced during public comments. Additionally, the public has the opportunity to contact their Ward representatives and discuss upcoming agenda items.

5. What is the most admirable thing about the City Council to you?

The individual council members take time out of their lives to help address issues that face the city and the populace.

6. What is your position on the deer hunt situation?

I was asked to be on the Deer Hunt Committee by Mayor Pate. I am not personally for the deer hunt; however, the committee went to great effort to set up a responsible hunt within the city limits. The 15 hunters selected by Chief Hyatt are all known, responsible and experienced hunters. I should say that nearly all the core of the city will be excluded from the hunt due to minimum setback requirements as required by state law.

7. What is your position on the taxi vs. limo debate?

I have no opinion.

8. How do you think the City Council should deal with the upkeep and/or replacement of aging infrastructure -- sewer system, sidewalks, etc.? How should the City pay for the above?

I addressed my concerns about infrastructure issues above. Paying for the needed improvements (and the extension of water and sewer services to those parts of the city that currently are not on the system) is a primary concern. An incremental, prioritized plan of action would at least limit the costs on a yearly basis. Ultimately, a small infrastructure improvement tax or assessment fee may be required to adequately address these concerns.



Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration. If you already have an account on this site, enter your username and password below. Otherwise, click here to register.

Username:

Password:  (Forgot your password?)

Your comments:
Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic.