BLOOMINGTON — Jamie Mathy sees sewers and streets that need to be fixed as the top priority not just in Ward 1, but throughout Bloomington.

"The can has been kicked down the road for many, many years, and we're running out of places for that can to get kicked," he said.

For his challenger, Susan Feldkamp, in a two-way race to represent Ward 1 on the Bloomington City Council, "the top one would be financial responsibility," she said. 

"I will push (the city council) to lower taxes or at least not raise them any more than they already are," said Feldkamp. "And I want the city to earmark money for the infrastructure, which we will be needing to use in a few years."

They are seeking to replace incumbent Ward 1 Alderman Kevin Lower, who did not seek re-election because he is vying to unseat Tari Renner as mayor.

"I think the next city council is going to be the council that has to make some very tough decisions on how to fix infrastructure as well as balance the budget," said Mathy.

Mathy, 43, of 611 E. Washington St., owns two small businesses in downtown Bloomington. Feldkamp, 58, is a receptionist and resides at 1401 Wright St.

Former Mayor Steve Stockton appointed Mathy in February 2013 to fill a vacancy created by the resignation of Bernie Anderson. Mathy lost his seat to Lower in April 2013.

In October, Feldkamp and Lower jointly announced their candidacies on the same day that the city's Liquor Commission was disbanded.

Renner had appointed Feldkamp to serve on the three-member commission with him, but she refused to step down when he decided to go solo on reviewing alcohol issues until complaints alleging open meetings violations were resolved.

When Renner reinstated the commission earlier this month, he did not ask Feldkamp to rejoin. A state attorney general's public access counselor found Renner did not violate the law by consulting with one or both liquor commissioners outside of a public meeting. 

At a candidates forum March 14, Feldkamp said she would vote for Lower for mayor. 

"I am afraid if we stay with the same mayor taxes will go up instead of going down, and the city cannot sustain that," she said. 

Mathy said he is voting for Renner because "I don't feel like Alderman Lower has actually done a very good job of communicating with constituents."

Follow Maria Nagle on Twitter: @pg_nagle

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