BELDING — Four people are running for two seats on the Belding City Council.
Incumbents Jon Bunce and Roger Wills are running for re-election against newcomers Joe Feuerstein and Carl Jonas. A fifth candidate, Robert Train, has dropped from the election, but will appear on the ballot.
Bunce, 38, is running for re-election after serving for four years as a council member. He currently works at Benteler Automotive in Belding and has lived in the city his entire life.
“I’ve enjoyed the last four years I’ve been on the council and I’m proud of some of the things we’ve accomplished in that time,” he said. “I’m particularly proud of some of the things we’ve gotten our hands on that most people would walk away from.”
Bunce wants to continue helping the city move forward, especially with implementing the new historic district.
“I want to make sure that get’s done right and is handled properly for the city,” he said.
Bunce also wants to keep the fire department, police department and ambulance service separate.
Joe Feuerstein, 71, is retired and has lived in Belding his entire life. Before retirement, he worked at Electrolux in Greenville.
Feurstein said he is running because he is not satisfied with the way city council currently operates.
“You can’t get any answers down here,” he said. “I’m not satisfied. Most of the money is being wasted here in this downtown district. It’s ridiculous.”
Feurstein says he’d like to put out a “decent budget that people can read and understand.”
Jonas, 57, operates his own business, Silk City Soda Blasting, and has lived in Belding his entire life.
“I have the time now to devote to helping the community grow,” he said. “I want to bring in more business and industry, bring more jobs to Belding.”
Jonas doesn’t have any other specific goals in mind, but said he would “wait until the general public tells him what they want.”
“The best thing you can do is listen to the citizens,” he said. “They know what the top priorities are.”
Train has dropped out of the election.
Wills, 65, has been on the city council for 10 years and is currently the mayor. He is retired after teaching science for Belding Area Schools for 42 years.
Wills said he initially thought 10 years would be enough, but feels he still has work left to do.
“Over this last year I’ve been involved in the city’s marketing plan and marketing video and was involved in fundraising to bring in a marketing development person to help all the businesses in Ionia County and to attract new businesses,” he said. “I want to continue to be a part of that, because those are some really impactful things that can really help our city and county.”
Wills said he would also wants to see the Electrolux lawsuit through to a successful conclusion.
“We are well involved with the Electrolux litigation and I want to help bring that to a positive resolution for the city of Belding,” he said. “I have also enjoyed working on some of the smaller projects, like the city shuffleboard courts.”