Redwood Falls city council candidates – Member At Large: John Buckley
Why are you running for city council?
I grew up being taught that we should all be involved and give back to the community in any way that we can. I feel that being on the Redwood Falls city council has been a good fit for me, and I would like to continue serving for the next four years. There are many exciting as well as challenging projects that will be occurring in the next few years, and I think that my 20 years of past experience will be a benefit to the council.
From your perspective, what is the role of a city council member?
The role of a city council person can be different depending on our individual areas of expertise. The best councils are those made up of a diverse group of individuals with different areas of expertise. I’ve been a business owner for 40 years. Those years of experience are what I bring to the table. Aside from the many policy decisions we deal with, the city is very much a business, and I treat it as such.
What do you think is the city’s greatest asset? How would you as a city council member best utilize that asset?
Our greatest assets are the people of the community. Over the years, I have seen groups form and accomplish amazing things. Friends of the Park, Friends of the Library and the Celebrate Redwood Falls group among many others have shaped much of what our community has today. I hesitate to even mention these by name, as there are so many groups and clubs that have come forward over the years to benefit Redwood Falls. We also have a number of commissions whose members serve with a passion for making Redwood Falls better. The city council’s role is to do what we can to assist these groups in reaching their goals.
What do you think is the city’s most important issue that needs to be addressed? How would you work to resolve it?
Job growth and housing go hand in hand as our biggest challenge in rural Minnesota. We need to continue to promote our community as well as strive to streamline our system to make it easier for businesses to come here as well as to expand. We need to continue our close partnership with Redwood County EDA and, with their help, seek out potential new businesses. We also need to listen to the needs of businesses that are already here. We can always do better in that regard. With the recent purchase of two parcels on the west side of town, our next steps will be to come up with a plan for the future of an expanded industrial park as well as a new area for housing.
Why should people vote for you?
I feel that my 40 years of business management and my 20 years experience as a city councilman will be an asset to the council.
Please provide a brief bio of yourself.
I am co-owner of the Redwood Falls Nursery along with my two brothers. Our business was started by my family in 1951 and I started in the business in 1979. I have two adult children and five grandchildren. Other than my four years of college, I have lived in Redwood Falls all my life. I served on the Park and Rec Commission for nine years and have been on the city council for the past 20 years.