Jeremy Biggs is running for re-election to the Paragould City Council Ward 2 Position 1 seat. His opponent is Ronnie C. Spence. The municipal positions are non-partisan.
The election is Tuesday, November 3. Early voting begins on Monday, October 19.
The Daily Press asked candidates to respond to the following questions by email along with this statement: “We are asking that candidates try to limit their answers for each question to about 250 words at the most:”
PDP: Why do you want to serve on the Paragould City Council?
Jeremy Biggs: As a native of Paragould and a life-long resident of Ward 2, the opportunity to make our city a beacon in Northeast Arkansas and a place where my daughter and future generations want to stay and start their own families is very important to me.
Ronnie Spence: Very simple, we need conservative representation on the Paragould City Council. We need a councilman who understands that he/she works for the people. It seems that some of our Councilmen including my opponent has forgotten that they work for the people of Paragould and not certain groups or organizations.
PDP: How are you qualified to serve on the council?
Ronnie Spence: I understand how government works, I understand that we are servants and we only hold the office at the will or pleasure of those who vote us in or out of office.
I understand if I am elected I work for the about 7,400 people in my Ward, they are my boss.
Jeremy Biggs: My four years of experience and leadership on the City Council is invaluable. I have worked with leaders in city government, county government, private businesses, industry and local non-profits in an effort to collaborate to make sure resources are available for all citizens to prosper.
PDP: What are the most important issues your ward needs to face first if you are elected?
Jeremy Biggs: My focus will be on continued improvements to our streets as well as making sure funding for improvements to our water and sewer infrastructure is available. I will make sure our police and fire departments are well funded and provide in-depth training so they can succeed in every aspect of their job. Also, improvements to our parks and constructing a state-of-the-art trail system throughout our city is very important to me. I know that providing high-quality outdoor recreation facilities and opportunities is vital in attracting citizens to Paragould.
Ronnie Spence: Code enforcement. Right now there is way to much of the good ol’ boy network. If elected I will do my best to make sure Code Enforcement rules apply to all. City Council has failed to do their job on this. We need bidding on all jobs, all qualified contractors should be allowed to bid on city jobs (starting with Paragould-Greene County contractors first).
PDP: What citywide issues or projects do you see needing to be dealt with by the council?
Ronnie Spence: Drainage needs to be worked on. We have Streets that need to be fixed, and garbage in the front yard such as old furniture, etc.
Jeremy Biggs: Continuing to attract diverse and high earning employment opportunities is important to ensure that all citizens can achieve a higher quality of life. I think we also need to invest in long-term city planning, an in-depth traffic plan and land use plan.
PDP: Please tell us about yourself (family, employment, etc.)
Jeremy Biggs: I was born in Paragould and am a graduate of Paragould High School and Arkansas State University. Currently, I am the Executive Director of Court Appointed Special Advocates of the 2nd Judicial District. I have served as chairman of the Paragould Advertising and Promotion Commission since its inception. I am a graduate of Leadership Paragould, serve as treasurer of the Paragould Kiwanis Club and on the board of Mission Outreach of NEA, Inc. I am married to April and we have a beautiful daughter, Ava.
Ronnie Spence: I am 58 years old, one daughter and one grandson, I am a graduate of Paragould High School, I have two years of college. I am the owner and promoter of The National Wrestling Federation NWF. Although I will be on the ballot as an independent (their rules not mine), I am a conservative Republican. I am a registered Republican. I am a member of the Greene County Republican Committee. Therefore I am running as a conservative Republican. This election is about the forgotten men, women, and families. If you are tired of your voice not being heard on city council I am asking for your vote. Together we will be heard.