2019 Election

District 3 commissioner candidates promote big ideas for Siler City

Posted 10/4/19

2019 Election | District 3 Commissioner

SILER CITY — The role of a town commissioner is usually pretty simple: be part of discussion and cast your vote at the appropriate time.

But …

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2019 Election

District 3 commissioner candidates promote big ideas for Siler City

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Posted

2019 Election | District 3 Commissioner

SILER CITY — The role of a town commissioner is usually pretty simple: be part of discussion and cast your vote at the appropriate time.

But commissioners can use their position to advocate for a big project, a new idea or continuing a project that’s brought positives to the town.

Each of the three candidates for the District 3 commissioner seat in Siler City — incumbent Michael Constantino and challengers Timothy “Cookie” Brown and Curtis Brown — have at least one major idea that they say will help stimulate economic growth in town and make Siler City more appealing to both potential businesses and families already living in the area.

District 3 covers most of the town’s incorporated area west of the railroad tracks downtown and north of Second Street.

Hitting the Pitch

Constantino, who is seeking to extend his eight-year run on the town board, has referenced multiple ideas, but his No. 1 goal if re-elected is to develop Siler City as “a center for soccer development.”

Citing his work, along with UNC professor Paul Cuadros, in renovating the soccer field at Braxton Park, Constantino said he would vote for similar projects that would “enhance the economic development of the town with minimal expense impact to the budget.”

Coupling the current soccer field availability the town has with 50 acres adjacent to Bray Park Siler City owns, there are a lot of possibilities for soccer expansion.

“I believe I have some friends that would get behind a project like that,” Constantino said. “It would take a lot of promoting and I think we could pull it off. We should be famous for something besides chicken processing, don’t you think?”

That’s the crux of Constantino’s argument for more soccer. He says that Siler City needs something “for our young people to be proud of,” and making the city a soccer haven would “be a plus for our economy” with residual spending on meals, gas and other expenses. All it would require, Constantino said, is town approval, that most if not all of the work would not need government involvement.

Play Grounds

For Timothy “Cookie” Brown, Siler City’s parks opportunities are its best assets.

“From the programs to the updated Bray Park Aquatic Facility,” he said.

Falling in line with Constantino’s push for recreation as a big draw, Timothy Brown’s desire is to increase accessibility and investment in the town’s Parks & Recreations facilities and programs.

“It is a life line for the community,” he said. “It reaches families and joins our community to others.”

Similar to Constantino’s words about soccer, Timothy Brown says the recent work done to Bray Park, particularly the addition of a splash pad, “has been vital in giving Siler City a destination of entertainment, and he added that he “would like to see it expanded upon and utilized to full potential.”

He added that one of his goals is to “expand on economic development for our downtown area” and “make (the town) easier and more inviting to open entertainment venues.

Additionally, like the other candidate that shares his last name, Timothy Brown said the town needs “improvements in water and sewer to bring clean and quality water to every area of our town.”

H2O to the City

Curtis Brown’s big idea: water and wastewater system improvement and expansion.

“Municipal governments as utility providers play a significant role in promoting economic development activity,” he said. “Without widely available, reliable and affordable water and wastewater services, most projects could not get off the ground. Making wise utility planning decisions will position Siler City to be a major player in economic development.”

Curtis Brown referenced Mountaire Farms, that the company “chose Siler City because at the time we could supply the water and sewer.”

His top two goals, he stated, were to make operational the town’s auxiliary water supply and begin the permitting process for expansion to the town’s wastewater plant.

“I was involved in the 1988-1994 expansion and I believe I can help move this forward,” he said.

He said that improved and increased access to water and wastewater services will benefit future industries that might come to the area, as well as the residents who already live in Siler City.

“Industries create jobs. Jobs create consumers. Consumers want to purchase homes, vehicles, groceries, tires, etc,” he said. “That supports businesses, grows the tax base and increases water and wastewater revenue. All our citizens and Town departments will benefit.”

Reporter Zachary Horner can be reached at zhorner@chathamnr.com or on Twitter at @ZachHornerCNR.

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