Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Walker, T.J. Reardon go at it in political forum


If there was one thing to take out of Wednesday night's political forum held at Kansas City Kansas Community College, it's this - Unified Government Board of Commissioner At-Large 2 candidates Hal Walker and T.J. Reardon are not fond of each other.

Near the end of their 30-minute session, Walker and Reardon exchanged salvos towards each other.

Reardon spent the majority of his time being critical of the current Unified Government leadership and structure.

"We have people in this city making $200,000," Reardon said. "We owe $3.8 billion in bonds. We have to stop the giveaways. We have to getaway from the giveaways."

In his closing remarks, Walker accused T.J. Reardon of having no plan for the city.

"Rhetoric is one thing," Walker said. "My plan reduces real property taxes. But people want roads and sewers to work. We have to provide basic services as well. This election is about knowledge, experience and character. Those of you who know me know I'll bring more to the table in all three areas than my opponent will."

Reardon responded to Walker's remarks in his own closing statement.

"Hal's been working for the county and city for 35 years," Reardon said. "He's done nothing. If he hasn't done anything for 35 years, what makes you think he'll start now?"

Walker has worked as a city attorney and Chief Legal Counsel for the Unified Government.

During the actual meat and potatoes of the forum session, Reardon called for a new way of government, while Walker said Wyandotte County needs to restore the pride it once had across the entire county.

"We need to move away from this old type of government," Reardon said. "We need to go to an honest form of government."

Walker said the two central important parts of his economic agenda would center around the Fairfax Industrial district and development along Interstate 435.

"What occurred out west is not unique," Walker said. "That type of vision can be applied to the rest of the county."