As you’re probably well aware, there is an important election coming in Springfield on April 4. There are 13 candidates vying for six City Council seats and Springfield Public Schools has a $189 million bond issue on the ballot.
We know your experience in Leadership Springfield has led you to be much more aware of community issues. But we hope the experience goes beyond awareness. We hope you’ve been able to see a more complete picture of how our community works and why – or why not.
Leadership Springfield isn’t endorsing any candidate or issues, but we are FULLY encouraging you to participate in the process. Better yet, try to get other people to pay attention and vote as well. It’s an undisputable fact that voter turnout in Springfield for local elections has been dismal in recent years, often hovering at around 10 percent – sometimes less. We can do so much better.
For information on absentee voting, The Greene County Clerk’s Office has registration info.
To help you get more involved in the City Council races, we’re partnering with The Network to host Access to the Issues: City Council Candidate Forum at 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 23 at the newly renovated Schweitzer Brentwood Branch Library. All of the candidates have been invited. This is one of several forums happening in March, and if you can’t attend this one then seek out others. We’re holding ours in the daytime for those who might be able to get away during work hours but can’t attend an evening event. If you want to know who the Chamber is endorsing and why, check out this link.
The school bond issue is a highly important one. If passed, it will help set the tone for Missouri’s largest public school district for decades to come. SPS has a wealth of information available online about the proposal. We would also encourage you to check out the Quality Schools for Kids campaign, which is urging a YES vote on the issue and is looking for volunteer help. A number of Leadership Springfield alumni are a part of this campaign. We know they would be more than happy to talk to you if you have questions. The Chamber is encouraging a YES vote, as is the Springfield Council of PTAs.
As president of Leadership Springfield, I’m challenging you to do more. Register a friend or relative this week. Take a friend to the polls April 4. Engage your circle in conversation about city issues. Request a yard sign for the candidate you are supporting. You could even write a letter to the editor or canvas neighborhoods I personally am engaged in this election. I’ve studied the issues. I’ve learned about the candidates. I have a yard sign posted and I contributed financially to support the campaign of the candidate I think can best lead our city forward. I hope you will do the same. Together we can make a difference.
President, Board of Directors
Applications open for Classes 33 & 34 are open until April 17th, help us recruit those you feel would be a great addition to the program.