Lawton_Continuing coverage of the race for Lawton City Council. Tuesday night on 7 News at 10 we brought you the candidates for Ward 3. Wednesday we sit down with the candidates running in Ward 4.
Ward 4 is proving to be the most heated race of the season. The candidates are the incumbent Keith Jackson, who has served 12 years on the council -- and his competitors Jay Burk and Dale Scott.
The council elected current Ward Four Councilman & small business owner Keith Jackson as mayor pro-tem this year. And he says he needs to stay on the council because experience is what it will take to get East Lawton moving forward. "I think it's real beneficial to the people of Ward 4, East Lawton in particular, that I've got several years of experience of being a councilman," Jackson said. "And I think experience helps East Lawton, it brings us to the table and makes sure we get our fair share of the interest here in the city of Lawton."
Jackson says he's the best candidate because his roots run deep in East Lawton. "My family values are in East Lawton, all my family lives in East Lawton, I attend church in East Lawton."
Candidate Jay Burk is also a small business owner -- and he says he would use his time on council to bring other small businesses into town. He says that will increase the local economy, and keep the younger generations invested in Lawton. "I think that we've got to see growth, we've got to increase wages, we've got to see new business come to Lawton," Burk said. "Lawton has to be pro-business. And we got to make sure that we take care of our families, let our kids back home and we do the right thing for Lawton so Lawton can prosper and just get bigger and bigger and better."
Burk says he is the best candidate for the seat because he's got a fresh outlook on what East Lawton needs. "Well I hope that we will have new vision and that we can make decisions that are looking forward instead of, it seems like we are looking in the rear-view mirror, and make decisions that are going to benefit Lawton for years to come," he said.
Dale Scott agrees the council needs a new face and a new outlook for Ward 4 -- and says he's the man for the job because he's the voice of East Lawton citizens. "Well I'm a citizen and I care about what the citizens' needs are," Scott said. "And I'm not backed by any special interest group. I'm not backed by any kind of union. I'm backed by my family and my friends. And we're out because we care about citizens because we're just normal citizens. And that's what I'm looking forward and that's what I want the citizens to understand."
Scott says before the council spends more money on beautifying Lawton -- he wants to make sure the city is enforcing existing codes, that way both the citizens and the city will be responsible for cleaning up our streets. "I'm after enforcing the codes we have, and if we're not going to enforce the codes then I want to have those codes eliminated," he siad. "We either enforce the codes or do away with them."
Lawton's voter turnout is usually remarkably low, and Ward 4 is expected to be a very close race. So the candidates are asking you to get out and vote -- it doesn't matter who you vote for, as long as you cast your ballot.
Thursday we'll be featuring the candidates in Ward 5. The city council election is next Tuesday, December the 11th -- and you can count on us to bring you the reactions from the winning candidates that night as the results come in.