Chamber of Commerce champions City Council candidates

Friday, February 19, 2010 | 4:31 p.m. CST

The Columbia Chamber of Commerce board of directors on Friday endorsed City Council candidates Gary Kespohl, Daryl Dudley and Bob McDavid. This is the first time the chamber has endorsed candidates for a city election.

“We felt we needed to be fair,” Chamber President Don Laird said. “We gathered information from all the candidates and held a forum.”

In January, board chairman Byron Hill appointed six people to an endorsement task force, whose purpose was to evaluate the candidates and give recommendations to the board, Laird said. The board endorsed the candidates proposed by the task force.

“We weren’t against anybody, these are just the people that would help provide the balance that is important for a member of the city council,” Laird said.

Kespohl is running against incumbent Karl Skala in the Third Ward race and Dudley is running against Tracy Greever-Rice, Sarah Read and Rick Buford in the Fourth Ward race. McDavid is running against Sid Sullivan, Fourth Ward councilman Jerry Wade, Paul Love, Sal Nuccio and Sean O’Day in the mayoral race.


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Ray Shapiro February 19, 2010 | 5:45 p.m.

(“We felt we needed to be fair,” Chamber President Don Laird said.")

To who?
Their biggest financial backers?

(Report Comment)
Larry Schuster February 21, 2010 | 9:04 a.m.

FYI -- the Chamber of Commerce is over 1,000 members strong, the bulk of whom are small business types with very few employees. The issues for our community as well as the remainder of the state and country are jobs, jobs, jobs. Without them municipal services suffer as they slowly have been doing the last several years and have accelerated in the last year and a half. The city council clucks as the city spirals downward.

(Report Comment)
Tim Dance February 21, 2010 | 9:32 a.m.

Actually Larry wants to go back to the days where they can have free reign on the city coffers. As we are connecting their developments at a discounted and not a market rate to the city infrastructure, that takes money from the more established parts of town. The Chamber has pushed for these big boxed stores, squeezing out small business. So enough with feign concern for small business. Big box stores do not create wealth in Columbia, that money is shot out of Columbia.

Larry and his ilk want inexperienced puppets that they can pull the strings.

(Report Comment)
Ray Shapiro February 22, 2010 | 12:48 a.m.

("Larry Schuster February 21, 2010 | 9:04 a.m.
FYI -- the Chamber of Commerce is over 1,000 members...")

-So like the Chamber's Chairman selected six people for this Endorsement group to make a "decision" for the more than 1,000 members and then the Chamber's Chairman declined to name five of the six people endorsing McDavid, etc. And then the Board rubber stamps the "decision" of these six people, (who for all I know five of six could theoretically be Board Members as well), and yet I personally could have predicted who the "inner sanctum of the Chamber" would endorse for Mayor and Third Ward, from the get go.

Kind of reminds me of the Borg's seven of nine.
Oh wait. She became an independent thinker.

I certainly hope for this city's sake that most of those 1,000+ members can think outside the hive.

("The Endorsement Task Force was chaired by Randy Coil and selected by Chamber Chairman Byron Hill, but Laird declined to name the other five members.")

(Report Comment)
nu Alerts February 24, 2010 | 5:45 p.m.

Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce is using a free service from nuAlerts ( to help their members get the word out via text messaging, facebook, twitter etc.

(Report Comment)

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