Though the filing period doesn’t begin until January, the first candidate for Lewisville City Council has already announced his intent to run for place 1.
Jon Dahlvig, 31, announced last week via Facebook that he was putting his hat in the ring for the May 2017 election for Lewisville City Council.
Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Leroy Vaughn currently holds that seat.
A paramedic and supervisor for CareFlite, Dahlvig works out of Bedford. He has previously worked as a jailer with the Sheriff’s department and has served as a volunteer firefighter for a few cities. Dahlvig also served in Lewisville Fire Department’s reserve program, though he says he is having to step down from that in order to run for council.
This is Dahlvig’s first run for public office. He says he has not served on any city boards, commissions, or committees yet. “I’m going to be your everyday Joe Blow citizen, trying to make the city a little bit better,” said Dahlvig.
Dahlvig has lived in Lewisville since 2005. He said he was born in San Antonio, but grew up in Highland Village. A 2004 Marcus High School graduate, he married his high school sweetheart Melissa in 2008. The two have twins, two-year-old Connor and Hailey.
As for his motivations to run for council, Dahlvig said it was not based on any dissatisfaction with the council or any of its members. “Honestly, the issues I have are more on a grander scale for the state level and federal level,” he said. “I think our city council is actually doing a great and tremendous job for our city.”
Top priorities for Dahlvig include more recreation opportunities in the city, and public safety. Dahlvig said he wants to ensure that public safety personnel get top equipment and training. “I say that because I live here, not just because I’m in that line of work,” he said. “I want the best if something happens to my family.”
Dahlvig advocates the city going to a zero-based budgeting scheme, which begins each year’s budget at zero, and makes each department justify each program and its expenditures each year. He also favors reducing taxes where possible— especially property taxes.
“Education could be better,” said Dahlvig. He says the schools could work on getting students more engaged and spend less time on standardized testing. But this was more of an issue for the school board, he said, and at the state level.
Crime is another priority for Dahlvig, who thinks Lewisville needs to work at keeping gangs out. “It’s not very obvious, but they are here,” he said.
The Vision 2025 plan and the city’s efforts at revitalizing Old Town are both examples of things Dahlvig says the city is doing right. He likes the efforts of the city to increase businesses, and said that he prefers more locally-owned businesses rather than corporate interests.
If he wins, Dahlvig may have to make minor modifications to his work schedule to make all of the City Council meetings, which are on the first and third Monday nights of the month. He currently works a schedule like firefighters, with 24 hours on duty, and 48 hours off. “If I do get elected, I’m going to have to figure that one out,” he said.
“Our city is pretty good,” said Dahlvig, who says he wants to ensure that it stays that way. “I have a philosophy of leaving it better than how I found it,” he said.
Dahlvig currently has a Facebook page for his campaign, and said he was going to work on a website. Dahlvig says he plans to hold meet-and-greet events for his campaign.
Vaughn said that as of yet, he had not made a final decision on whether to run for re-election or not. Earlier this year, he was out of commission for medical reasons related to a surgical procedure that went wrong. Vaughn had missed several council meetings. He has since been recovering, and is attending meetings again.
“I was kind of loosely thinking about my health and letting that guide me,” said Vaughn. “If I’m up to strength and everything, then I would run again; short of that, I wouldn’t,” said Vaughn.
Vaughn and and any other candidates will have three months to decide. City Secretary Julie Heinze said that the official filing period is Jan. 18 through Feb. 17. The election for 2017 will be held on Saturday, May 6. More information about filing for the council election is available on the city website.