Last Friday, we hosted both candidates for the District 2 City Council race in Twentynine Palm. Incumbent Joel Klink and challenger Jim Krushat stopped by the “Up Close Show” to share their visions for the city’s future. Reporter Heather Clisby has the details …
Come November 3, residents of District 2 in Twentynine Palms will choose their representative on the city council. Current Mayor and incumbent Joel Klink will face challenger Jim Krushat. Gary Daigneault sat down last Friday with both candidates on his weekly “Up Close Show” to find out where they stand on key issues. They discussed a history of city districting, personal backgrounds, wastewater concerns, relationships with the Morongo Band of Mission Indians and the Marine Corps Base, Project Phoenix, and tourism. Also discussed: vacation home rentals, civic participation, city personnel issues, economic development, speed of growth, the repeal of FP5, and the reality of climate change.
Challenger Jim Krushat discussed his motivation for running:
“Growing up, knowing about Twentynine Palms, seeing all the changes, the sense of community – I wanted to keep that going. Yes, I want to see some development but I also want to keep the unique characteristics of Twentynine Palms – the city that I remember, growing up. I don’t think anybody has more of an historic connection in Twentynine Palms of the candidates.”
Joel Klink also responded:
“What motivates me is that, like Jim said, we do want to grow as a city. We don’t want to grow too fast. I just love Twentynine Palms. I’ve been here 59 years and I’ve seen it grow from 3,900 citizens to over 20,000. We have the greatest people in Twentynine Palms.”
This show can be heard as a podcast through our site at Z1077fm.com.
The City of Twentynine Palms will hold an election for the city council representative for District 2. Reporter Heather Clisby spoke with incumbent and current Mayor Joel Klink and challenger Jim Krushat to find out more about the candidates…
Come November, the City of Twentynine Palms will have a City Council election representing District 2, generally the City’s western side and a portion of Indian Cove. Incumbent Joel Klink, currently the Mayor, will face off against challenger, Jim Krushat. Klink has been on the Council for 16 years and Krushat, who father, Les Krushat served on the City’s first Council, now serves on the City’s Planning Commission.
When asked what about looming issues and what they would like to accomplish during their tenure, both candidates felt that the proliferation of Vacation Home Rentals needed attention. Klink would like to explore the addition of a big box store, such as a Target, while Krushat wants to tackle a plan for wastewater management and strengthening the Basin’s medical infrastructure.
Klink and Krushat will be the guests on the Z107.7 Up Close show this Friday from 10-11. Residents in 29 Palms District 2 can call in and ask questions of the candidates live on the air.
Why are you running?
I’ve been on the Council for 16 years and this is my final campaign. After so many stops and starts on Project Phoenix, I knew I wanted to stay to see it become reality. We’ve been working on this project for many years! When they took back the redevelopment money, we had to go get bonds – it was chaotic. We were able to keep the bonds and now it’s going to happen. We’ll be taking bids in November, begin building in February, and it should be done by 2022.
What makes you qualified for this position?
I mentioned my 16 years on the Council and am quite familiar with City government and how it all works. I also spent 35 years as a letter carrier in this City and I know every neighborhood, every street, every inch! Now as a Farmers Insurance agent, I help people in a different capacity. I’ve been here 59 years – it’s home.
What do you hope to accomplish?
We got our Starbucks but I’d like to see shopping choices here. I would like to see Twentynine Palms get one big box store – maybe a Target — because people would stay here in town to shop.
What are some looming issues facing the City?
The proliferation of Vacation Home Rentals (VHRs) is definitely one. We can’t let it go too long without having some kind of plan.
My family has an extensive history in this community and there’s a feeling of commitment – you have to do something! I’m very active locally – Kiwanis Club, Planning Commission, Historical Society – and am a third-generation resident. I want to see the City develop and progress while still maintaining its’ unique desert city atmosphere.
What qualifies you for this position?
I bring a unique skill set. I come from a defense industry background where I dealt with management issues and limited resources. I have a deep understanding of government policy. I retired in 2015 and became immediately involved in the local community. Being on the Planning Commission, past president of the Kiwanis Club and involved in the Historical Society has given me insight on how the City runs. I will be a very productive city council member from the get-go.
What do you hope to accomplish?
I hope to see the completion of Project Phoenix and other projects promised to community. I still want to see some development, maybe some big name restaurants and venues for people to enjoy. One area I’d really like to support is tourism. When we foster development, we must not detract from what we love, like the night sky. I think we can reach that balance.
What are the biggest issues facing the City?
We have to start planning for wastewater management. We will have to go on a sewer some time in the future.
There’s been some discussion around Vacation Home Rentals and I see them more of a positive than a negative. I have one on each side of me and have had no problems. The properties often became vastly improved and I have met some neat people, but we will deal with with that and make sure there is an avenue for complaints.
Also, I see a large amount of retirees coming out here as it is a very unique place but we are going to need a medical infrastructure that can really support them. We need candidates that are a little more pro-active and that will work directly with City staff. I really think you can be pro-active without being disruptive.
How can people contact you?
They can visit my website, krushat29citycouncil.com. My campaign is entirely self-funded but I would love to hear any questions or concerns that people have.
Twentynine Palms residents will get a chance to hear directly from the two candidates for City Council, Division 2. Z107.7 will hold a candidates’ forum Friday, October 9 with incumbent Joel Klink and challenger Jim Krushat. Host Gary Daigneault will interview the candidates and take calls from listeners live on the air during the special “Up Close” show from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. You are invited to participate by e-mailing a question you would like answered to email@example.com by 5 p.m. Thursday, October 8. All questions must be one that can be answered by both candidates.
San Bernardino County Fire Chief Dan Munsey will be the guest on Friday’s Up-Close Show. Munsey will discuss the FP-5 fire fee and the functions of the County fire Department. Tune in to Z1077 at 10 a.m. Friday to hear Fire Chief Dan Munsey discuss Fire operations in the nation’s largest County.
Morongo Unified School District Superintendent Tom Baumgarten will be joined by San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools Ted Alejandre and Dr. Erin Gustafson, San Bernardino County Acting Health Officer on the Z107.7 “Up Close” show this Friday at 10 a.m. This will be a unique opportunity to call in live and ask about local and county school approaches and how they are dealing with COVID-19 concerns.