Mayoral candidates share their plans


Candidates for mayor of Rexburg shared their thoughts about the campaign and some of the goals they want to accomplish.

Elections will be held Nov. 3

Jerry Merrill and Chris Mann studied at Ricks College, and they want to work closely with BYU-Idaho.             

They have been members of the City Council for several years, and both have raised their children in Rexburg.

“I believe they are well-qualified and will benefit this community,” Kaitlin Clark, a freshman studying elementary education said.

Chris Mann worked for BYU-I for 33 years. His wife, Barbara, taught English at BYU-I for 20 years.

One of Mann’s intentions is to strengthen the connection between the university and the city.

“Rexburg needs BYU-Idaho,” he said.

Mann said he wants to work with the students and treat them with respect. He wants to provide jobs for the current students and graduates. He wants to encourage students to start their businesses here.

“Rexburg wants to help you,” Mann said.

He said he wants to have an open, transparent government and show people their taxes are being well spent.                                               

“We have to grow together,” Mann said. “We need each other.”              

The theme of his campaign is “Mutual respect helps us achieve our common goal.”

“We are all members of the Church, but it doesn’t mean we all think alike or want the same things,” Mann said about the City Council.   

Mann said he and the council work very well together.

Jerry Merrill said sometimes there is a little bit of miscommunication in the council, but he and the council have known and respected each other for several years.

Merrill served in bishoprics for many years in Rexburg, and he has been working with the administration of the university to have a partnership between the community and the students.

“We will try to make activities that involve both college students and townspeople­­,” Merrill said.

Merrill’s wife, Marianne, said it was easier in the past to have a close partnership between the city and the university, but since the university has grown, it is hard to share the fields, the gym and the basketball court. However, there are many concerts, and the community has always been welcome to participate.             

Merrill said he is aware of the need of jobs for students.

He said one of his goals is to bring companies here that will provide jobs not only for the students, but also for the graduates.

Merrill said many students like Rexburg and want to raise their families here, but they do not have many job opportunities and normally move to other places because of that.

Merrill said his intention is to work better with the citizens of Rexburg and strive to better understand their needs                                          

He said he wants to work personally with the citizens of Rexburg and has built a good relationship with the  school district.

“I feel confident that I can bring people together to come up with solutions for problems and issues,” he said.

Mann said he does his best to work with people on both sides of an issue so he can find a solution that will benefit everyone.      

His campaign theme is “Moving forward together.”                                             

They both said they have good ideas, enthusiasm and a love for Rexburg.

“It’s good, because they share the same beliefs and values,” Clark said. “So they will find good ways to improve the town,”

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