GOP hosts forum for endorsed candidates

Six Missoula City Council candidates recruited and endorsed by the Missoula Republican Central Committee shared their views on topics ranging from tax increment financing to open space bonds during a wide-ranging, informal forum Wednesday night.

Each candidate is seeking a seat in one of the city’s six wards, and the group included both Republicans and Democrats, noted Vondene Kopetski, the Missoula County Republican Party chair. The council race is non-partisan, so Kopetski said they set out to recruit candidates “based on what the citizens of Missoula said they needed in council members.”

“We had a whole list of things,” Kopetski said. “People want lower taxes. People want reduced spending. They want the council to listen to voters instead of having their minds made up. They don’t want personal agendas … They want to consolidate city services to save money.”

The six candidates who were endorsed include Amber Shaffer in Ward 1; Brent Sperry in Ward 2; Drew Iverson in Ward 3; Alan Ault in Ward 4; John Contos in Ward 5; and Sandra Vasecka in Ward 6. All of the candidates said Missoula’s high property taxes and the spending by the city were

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