Clare business owners and Reed City Council members are vying for their 100th District Council seat in Tuesday’s election.
Claire’s Tom Koons, 51, is running for the seat vacated by term-limited Republican Scott Van Singer against Reed City’s Nate Bailey, 33.
Kunse, a Republican, believes the future will be better than the present, and says he has the courage to help make it happen.
Bailey is a Democrat who describes himself as a multi-tasker, and in addition to serving on Reed City Council, he is a real estate agent, planning commissioner, IT support specialist, graphic designer, web designer and specializing in restaurants and Business consultant for bar business.
Kunse has lived in Clare for 50 years and has owned the transport company Northern Dry Bulk since 1994.
If elected, he said, his goal is to promote the tech industry as a route to higher-paying jobs.
Bailey, a real estate agent with Crossroads Realty in Michigan, believes that his perspective and knowledge in a wide range of fields will be an asset to the people of the newly designated District 100, which includes parts of Clare and Lake Ceola and Mecosta counties.
While Bailey believes there are many issues affecting residents in his area, he believes some issues, such as inflation, cannot be addressed at the state level.
If elected, Bailey wants to focus on issues he can help address, including infrastructure like roads, water and high-speed internet; education focused on the tech industry; and the housing shortage crisis.
Koons said he wanted to see the state cut government spending and cut taxes, and wanted to curb government overreach by “going to Lansing to keep Lansing out of central Michigan.”
“Individuals can make better decisions about their lives than well-meaning bureaucrats,” Kunse said.
Bailey has been a real estate agent for over 15 years, an IT support specialist for over 20 years and a member of Reed City Council for 4 years.
In addition to employment and the economy, Kunse believes that local elected officials should be more committed to students’ educational requirements.
Kunse, whose credentials include nearly 30 years as a small business owner with more than 50 employees, says he’s a practical problem solver and has hosted hockey and baseball games.
Bailey is president of the Old Rugged Cross Historical Society and chair of the RCPC Economic Reconstruction Committee.
Kunse says he works with a variety of people on a regular basis, and he’s experienced in high-pressure positions and works with passionate people.
He said he is level-headed, can discuss without hatred, and that no matter what happened in the past, he can work with people to solve today’s problems.
Kunse graduated from Clare High School with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Michigan Technological University and a master’s degree in nuclear physics from Central Michigan University.
While Kunse doesn’t think the 2020 presidential election has been stolen, he supports requiring photo identification to vote on paper ballots with serial numbers.
Bailey also doesn’t believe the election was stolen — “full investigation has been done, it’s time for it to rest” — a 2007 graduate of Reed City High School and a 2007-2014 student at Ferris State University, There he majored in digital animation and finished his studies in technical communication before moving to elementary education.