Four people are running to be the next mayor of Keokuk: Carl Morgan, Tom Richardson, Patricia Whiteside and Dan Winn. Whiteside said she entered the race to help Keokuk move forward while also protecting its past.
Whiteside said Keokuk is her hometown and also the city she's chosen to return to after years of living across the country. She said she remembers Keokuk being a vibrant community and wants to return to those days.
Whiteside said a top priority for her would be economic development and trying to encourage businesses and investors to consider Keokuk. She said she plans to devote 40-50 hours/week to her role as mayor, despite the city council basing the salary of the mayor on a 10-hour work week starting in January.
Whiteside said she would also like to see the city halt its ramped-up demolition of vacant buildings and homes. She said if elected, she would require a certified engineer to present a report on the condition of a building prior to its demolition. She said if demolition is necessary, she would prevent companies from retaining salvage rights to the materials if they are already being paid for the demolition.
Whiteside said she would like to see more small, local businesses in the downtown district.
Whiteside was interviewed a couple weeks after the other mayoral candidates due to scheduling conflicts.
Current Mayor Tom Madison is not seeking re-election.