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Snipes running write-in campaign

Former council member running unofficially for seat

SOLON– Dale Snipes didn’t realize how much he missed being on the Solon City Council.
Snipes, 59, was appointed to the council in February 2015 and stood for election in November of that year. But when the hours of his employment changed, he made the decision to step down, and his letter of resignation was accepted July 7.
Afterward, he received comments from citizens expressing regret about his move, something he called “humbling.”
“Sometimes you don’t know who’s paying attention to the council meetings because they don’t always show up,” he said. “But after I resigned, I found out there’s quite a few people in this town who do pay attention to what does happen at council meetings.”
In the last few months, he said, people approached him and suggested he run again. After he explained he had missed the deadline, he was urged to run as a write-in candidate.
And that’s what he’s doing.
Snipes’ name will not appear on the official ballot for the Nov. 8 general election, but he’s attempting a grassroots campaign to reclaim his seat.
Snipes visited with county officials regarding the requirements to run as a write-in, then approached his employer.
“I told him that I had a real desire to run, and he said, ‘Well, let’s see what we can do,’” Snipes said. “We worked out a schedule that’s going to allow me to do it because he could see that I was very passionate about it, it meant a lot to me.
“I did miss it quite a bit,” he said.
There are two council seats on the Nov. 8 ballot– Snipes is running for the one that was previously his, which extends through 2019. It’s the second one listed, for a three-year term, and the official candidate is Shawn Mercer.
Lynn Morris is the official candidate for the other seat, a one-year term she was appointed to fill after the resignation of Casey Grover.
Snipes has been a resident of Solon since 2006. Born in St. Louis, but raised in downtown Detroit, he spent most of his life in Missouri and Arkansas before coming to Iowa in 2004. A former coffee company salesman, he began a career in over-the-road trucking in the late 1980s and is currently employed by United Natural Foods in Iowa City.
Snipes said his goals on the council would be to continue the city’s program of constructing curb and gutter in the older portions of town, and building on the success of the revitalized downtown area.
“We’ve got a great footprint here,” he said. “There’s been a lot of investment in our downtown area and I’d like to see it continue.”
Snipes said there were some “really cool things” that came out of the city’s new comprehensive plan. “I’d like to be part of that as some of these changes are taking place.”
The city will be seeing continued growth in housing, and has challenges ahead with the construction of a new ground storage reservoir, he added.
“I’m very humbled by being asked to run again,” he said. “I’m pretty proud that when I did sit on city council we got a lot of things accomplished.”
There were tough issues like dealing with the fallout from the audit of the fire department, he said, and big projects like the water tower repainting and the signalization of Highway 1 and Main Street.
“It’s kind of fun to be involved in those kind of decisions,” he said. “Even though they seem simple and easy, once you get in there you figure out they’re not as easy as they look.”
Snipes has taken out newspaper ads and will be out walking Solon neighborhoods up until election day. He can be reached by email at truckin2164@yahoo.com or by phone at 319-360-5256.