A year ago, city elections in Mason City produced a City Council far different than its predecessor in terms of age, demeanor and political philosophy.

Half of the council was replaced on election day with John Lee, Alex Kuhn and Jean Marinos replacing Jeff Marsters and Don Nelson, who chose not to seek re-election, and Max Weaver who lost to Marinos.

A year from now, the voters will once again get a chance to have their say in city government.

Mayor Eric Bookmeyer and council members Scott Tornquist, Travis Hickey and Janet Solberg will be up for re-election.

No one knows at this point whether any or all of them will run again. In the past two years they have presented pretty much of a united front on most issues and that front was solidified by the results of last year’s elections.

Looking at next year, there are many fascinating questions.

Is the public satisfied with the direction the city is headed?

Will some of the old guard try to get back in?

Supporters of Weaver will surely encourage him to run again.

John Jaszewski, who served three terms on the council, has also run for mayor twice, for supervisor once and for the state Legislature.

Will he run for mayor again or try to get his old council seat back — the one currently held by Solberg?

Former Councilman Leonard Foster has kept close tabs on city government since he left office and was an unsuccessful candidate to get his old council seat back. It would surprise no one if he tried to get back in the fray.

Steve Palmer, a Bookmeyer appointee to the Human Rights Commission, ran for City Council four years ago and lost to Hickey. Does he still have political aspirations?

Sandy Servantez ran for the council last year, losing to Kuhn. She says she has other priorities now but might be convinced to run against Solberg in the Fourth Ward.

Tim Latham lost last year to John Lee. Anyone who knows Latham knows he’ll stay active in the community. If he thinks he can make his best contribution as an elected official, he might find his way back in the ring.

These people have been active in the past. Last year, new names entered city politics. Perhaps the same thing will happen next year.

As former Mayor Roger Bang used to say, “the more the merrier.”

Reach John Skipper at 421-0537 or john.skipper@globegazette.com.

(3) comments


The present council is probably much better for Mason City, but it isn't nearly as much fun to read about. I'll bet that the many college government classes around the country are no longer using the Mason City council as an example of how not to run a city government.


City govt. is not about providing "fun" or entertainment for citizens. Thank goodness we now have a council that can work together & get something done, unlike the last council where 1 member in particular thrived on controversy & drama & making a spectacle out of MC. Hopefully if he runs again, the citizens will decide that enough was enough & not vote in anyone who just wants to stir up trouble. His silence probably means he's plotting again & using a different tactic. MC will see through it!


"can work together & get something done" I am confused what have they got done? Any new businesses in town? Crime rate escalating while positions remain OPEN on the police force. Added the Blue Zone claiming other business would be paying for it, but last I seen was 300 percent over budget. They spent a bunch of money to mess with the morale at the sanitation department before realizing no conects could beat the bank for the buck..............So again what have they got done?

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