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St. Paul Park City Council candidate profile: Jeff Swenson

Campaigning for a third term as a St. Paul Park City Council member, Jeff Swenson said his work on the council is not done.

With a background in finance, he said he wants to continue to keep the city financially stable and build upon the available assets.

“I’ve spent all my life managing large budgets,” he said, adding his praise for the council’s prudent spending habits and eliminating “fluff” from the recently passed budget.

As part of the 2014 fiscal year budget, the council approved $160,000 in transfers to the capital improvement fund, a move Swenson supported. He said with St. Paul Park being more of a residential community than a business hub, it is important to invest in long-term capital improvements.

“We’re doing things right now, such as road reconstruction, that will pay off many years from now,” he said. “We are investing in our community’s future.

“I don’t think adding more business is out of the question, but St. Paul Park is a residential community, an aging residential community,” he said. “And there’s nothing wrong with that. We need to maintain customer services for our residents.”

As a former member of the Heritage Days planning committee, Swenson said the annual city event, which is what originally prompted him to run for office eight years ago, needs changing but should continue.

“Heritage Days is near and dear to my heart,” he said. “We need to try and find activities that would draw more kids and more families together. I would like to see it continue in some fashion.”

As an incumbent vying for his seat, Swenson said he wants to continue advocating for the citizen’s best interests.

“I want to ensure that the city is run the best it possibly can with the assets available,” he said. “I want to do everything I can to make it affordable to our residents and watch every dollar.”