Joseph City Council: Richard "Dick" Burch

Joseph City Council: Richard "Dick" Burch

Age: 68

Occupation: Retired

Previous government service: Joseph City Council (appointed February, 2006); Manager, U. S. Bureau of Land Management

Community activities: member/board member, Wallowa County Rotary Club; American Red Cross as first aid instructor and public information.

What is the greatest issue facing your city and how would (you) deal with it? The economy of Joseph and the surrounding area has suffered in recent years due to the decline of higher paying jobs and other factors. The cost of housing has been appreciating at record levels, creating a shortage of affordable housing for working families and elderly residents on fixed incomes. I believe that it is time for the city council to explore potential solutions and adopt the best ideas for addressing these important issues.

What are your priorities for bettering your city? In the recent community rallies and other forums, citizens have expressed a strong desire to retain the high quality of life which we enjoy here. Retaining the "small town atmosphere" is frequently quoted as one of the most prevalent comments stated while exploring the vision of the future. Also mentioned often are strong feelings for protecting the beautiful natural environment we have. I am committed to these objectives and feel that all actions by the City of Joseph be guided by these concepts in land-use planning and other decision-making actions.

Why did you decide to run for office? I was appointed to the Joseph City Council to fill one of two vacant positions in February of this year. At that time, I felt that with my background and experience I might be able to help the city in the many challenges it faces. I am running for election to retain my position for the same reason; to help guide the city as it anticipates and plans for the pressures of change. Change is inevitable, but we can control and influence it and make Joseph a better place in which to live.

Local government should listen to, and work with, it's citizens to make the city a safe and pleasant place for it's residents. Involving the residents of Joseph in planning for the future is the key to meeting the needs of it's citizens in accommodating the change which will come.

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