“It’s important to give back to the community and to make a positive impact,” said Ro Poindexter who is seeking another term as the Sallisaw Ward 2 commissioner.
Poindexter, 63, said she is also seeking another term because, “I feel like I’m in the middle of something and I don’t want to leave it.”
She said she feels strongly about economic growth and development and about the city’s infrastructure. She would also like to see a positive impact upon the city by more citizens and positive support about the things city leadership is doing.
Poindexter said she would like people to understand that most businesses and industries require that a community have a population of at least 10,000 before locating in that community. Sallisaw has a population of about 8,200, which limits growth.
“Marketing our area is not easy,” she said.
-About the proposed splash pad at the old Tommie Spear Middle School, Poindexter said a location for the splash pad is still being considered. The old school grounds, at the swimming pool and at the Sports Complex, on the east side of the city, are all under discussion, but Poindexter said the Sports Complex is too far away from the downtown area.
-About improvements at the city’s water treatment plant, Poindexter said an up-to-date infrastructure is a necessity for a city.
“Citizens don’t see the infrastructure, but it is important to keep the infrastructure up to date,” Poindexter said. “You don’t wait until it falls apart. You have to be preventative, not reactive. At our next budget retreat it will be looked at. To run a city successfully you have to spend money.”
-About incentives to entice businesses and industries to the city, Poindexter said, “Our incentives could be our utilities, and the city has an industrial park. We have all kinds of transportation opportunities that are an incentive.
“But it is hard for a city our size to offer incentives,” Poindexter said. “We are competing with many others.”
-About increasing utility costs, Poindexter said the city has tried to hold down increases, and only passes on increasing costs to the customer as they are placed on the city.
Poindexter said, “There have been years we’ve not increased utility rates at all. You’ve got to break even at best.”
-About an update to the city charter, Poindexter said she would like to see the charter clarified.
-About the city helping the Sallisaw Chamber into a new office building, Poindexter said the chamber’s current building, supplied by the city, “is falling apart.” Work on the highway in front of the building will also take away the chamber’s front-door parking area.
“The city is not under any obligation to get or build a chamber building,” Poindexter said, “but the city and chamber work very well together.”
Poindexter said she would like to see that partnership continue.
Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director
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