While the Raymore City Council appointed Joseph Burke to fill the vacancy for the next few months, it will be up to the voters in April to decide who fills seat for two years. To help voters make an informed decision, we are sharing the interview process that the council conducted with the three applicants – Joseph Burke, Tom Circo, and Joseph Sarsfield.
What do you think is the role of a city council member?
Sarsfield – He is used to listening to people and working well with all types of people.
Burke – He put emphasis on communication and working together and providing direction and growth for the city.
Circo – He would approach it like he has his business and be an intermediate between the people and the government.
If you are appointed, what do you hope to accomplish in the next three and a half months?
Sarsfield – He would work to do the best for the citizens.
Burke – He would provide seamless change through listing to those more experienced.
Circo – He would have a running start, working with Moorhead for Ward 2 and working with the business culture to grow the city.
If you are the deciding vote on a divisive issue do you go with the majority of constituents or what you think is right?
Burke – He would do what is best to use the taxes the best way.
Circo – He would listen to the people but also be transparent to the people of the ward and would vote for the good of the many over the few.
Sarsfield – His first responsibility is to the citizens of Raymore and rather his was the first or last vote, it would be based upon information.
How do you handle it when a vote that goes against something your passionate about?
Circo – He would accept the responsibility of the vote.
Sarsfield – He said that it is not about him, but what is best for the city and its citizens.
Burke – He has had the experience on the Planning and Zoning Commission and was okay being the only one to vote one way and he believes that consensus is what drives decision making.
How do you plan to help the city fulfill its mission statement?
Sarsfield – He said that safety is the key because when people feel secure they are happy.
Burke – He said that the people are the greatest quality of this city.
Circo – He listed his volunteer work in the community and said that is what he would continue to do.
Do you feel that there is a city problem that is unaddressed? If so how would you fix it?
Burke – He felt that housing needs to increase. He also felt that too many people were working outside of Raymore and that the city needs to develop careers in Raymore. He would like to see a business park. He said that one question should drive the economic decisions – how do we increase our community economically faster than anyone else?
Circo – He believed that the effort needs to be made to bring more businesses in to alleviate the tax burden on the citizens.
Sarsfield – He said the city needs more businesses and specifically mentioned heavy industry and corporations.
If not appointed to fill the vacancy would you volunteer on other boards? If so which ones?
Circo – He named Parks & Rec but said that he was open to anything that will help grow the city.
Sarsfield – He named the Mayors Committee or Planning & Zoning and added that he would like to be in the start up of something.
Burke – He said he would continue on Planning & Zoning but would be willing to work on anything.
Do you intend to run in April for a full two year term?
Sarsfield – yes
Burke – yes
Circo – yes
In what capacities are you currently involved in within Raymore?
Burke – He has worked with Troop 32 Boy Scouts, coached in youth and high school sports and is a member of the optimist club.
Circo – Has been the President of the Chamber of Commerce, involved in the Ray-Pec Basketball Program, DECA, Booster Clubs, and the Youth Chamber of Commerce.
Sarsfield – Noted that having only lived here six years, his resume of activities is not as long as the others but that he had been active in registering voters, was a leader at his church’s men’s Bible study, and has been actively growing his business.
What experiences have you had as a citizen of Raymore that motivated you to file for the council position?
Circo – He has worked with many council members over the years as well as working with the Chamber of Commerce.
Sarsfield – He read the city newsletter and decided to get involved because he felt at this stage in his life it was time to give something back.
Burke – He said that being on the Planning & Zoning Commission and being involved in the school district made him want to volunteer to do more work.
Circo –He said that he has always been an advocate of education, and that life experience itself is the biggest education you will ever get. He told the council that building a business from scratch is not easy, but that is exactly what he did.
Sarsfield – He told the council that in the long run, your yeses have to be yes and your nos have to be no and people have to trust you. He said that he would hope that people who did not agree with his point of view would go away disappointed rather than mad after explaining his position to them.
Burke – He said that he cannot profit from this appointment unless it profits all the people of Raymore. He was volunteering to be a problem solver for their community and noted that challenges are fun to him.
To see a full video of the interview process go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CrtKsmf8AL4.