Right here, at the start of this commentary, please note, I’m not endorsing or repudiating any candidate from any party, for any office. I hope we’re clear on that.

Now, hopefully, thoughtful voters will consider many things when they mark up their ballots this fall. Experience, voting records, accessibility, and maybe even the number of lawn signs are considerations.

Political party, not so much.

One thing that’s consistently missing from candidates’ messages to voters is ideals. Lofty aims, if you will.

Not platitudes about justice, or accusations about what the opposition has done or is doing. We see plenty of that. Platitudes and accusations are not helpful. Telling us you want to be "conscientious stewards of taxpayers’ dollars" says nothing that any other candidate will not say. Citing your record may be nice, but what you did is not nearly as important as what you propose to do.

So tell us, what’s your ideal division of a tax dollar? I’ll make it simple for you.

Candidates for city office, you have 100 pennies. How many of them would go to:

  • Debt service
  • Police
  • Fire department
  • Parks and recreation
  • Streets, trails and sidewalks
  • Salaries and benefits
  • Water and sewer services

Candidates for state office, you have 100 pennies. How many of them would go to:

  • Debt service
  • Public safety
  • Parks and wildlife preservation
  • Highways and bridges
  • Education
  • Salaries and benefits
  • Government buildings and grounds

Remember, we are talking about your ideals here. This isn’t a discussion about pragmatism. Not a discussion about other candidates. And not a discussion about how other people in government will prevent you from acting on your ideals.

Here’s what I propose to do. Send me your website or Facebook site address, and I’ll publish it in my next commentary. From there, it’ll be up to you to show us how you would spend those 100 pennies.

Personally, I, as an informed voter, hope each candidate will respond with a site that shows us your ideals. You’re not afraid to do that, are you? And again, just to be clear, I will publish links of any and all candidates who submit them. Only candidates who don’t send links will be excluded. One last thing, if you are an incumbent, don’t use any official government links.

Send your site addresses to me at thom.boncher@gmail.com I need your responses by Friday, Sept. 4 to be available for the Sept. 10 issue of the JI.

The Quote: “Voters want conflicting things. They want a lot of government spending, but they don't want higher taxes.” -Bruce Rauner

Thom Boncher is a retired marketing communications manager, former Jordan City Council member and Jordan resident since 2003.

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