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Bremerton City Council Candidate Profile: Mike Sullivan
Tell us about your background and how it qualifies you to serve on the city council.
As a Bremerton resident of 30 years, I have a unique perspective on this community. From a career in the US Navy, I bring a demonstrated ability in distilling complex problems down to finite, achievable goals. As the refit coordinator for the USS Ohio, I managed 1,500 jobs and several hundred million dollars in projects to successful completion on time and under budget. My credit rating is 836, demonstrating that I am trustworthy and responsible.
What is the single most pressing issue in your district? What have you done, and what will you do, to address that issue?
Jobs. Bringing jobs back to Bremerton will rejuvenate this city, provide security and opportunity to our citizens, and provide tax revenue that the city needs to provide services and honor its commitments. We bring jobs by eliminating the B&O tax, and ensuring that building codes and permitting are as customer friendly as possible. I applaud the city council for taking a first step in this direction, but we need to do more.
If elected, what will be your top three priorities as a member of the city council?
Bremerton must provide the highest quality services at the best possible value to the taxpayer. To that end, we must:
Provide robust emergency services to ensure the safety of our city and its residents.
Streamline utility operations to provide downward pressure on service rates, and ensure world-class quality at unbeatable prices.
Provide for the expedient repair and maintenance of our roads and other infrastructure. We must beautify ALL of Bremerton.
Why are you the better candidate in this election? Why should voters choose you?
My education and career have equipped me to handle the challenges of elected office by teaching me the value of teamwork and, above all, the imperative to work cooperatively to accomplish tasks and solve problems. I have worked, and succeeded, in environments where failure is unacceptable; I get the job done. I have no further political aspirations; I’m simply trying to improve the city I love.
If you could change one thing about the City of Bremerton with the flick of a switch, what would it be and why?
Reverse Bremerton’s uncompetitive employment environment. The B&O tax, zoning ordinances and building codes are killing Bremerton jobs; anyone who looks north of Riddell Road on Highway 303 will see the stark contrast. We need to immediately implement a thorough, intelligent, results-oriented review of our policies and codes to make them competitive, and grow jobs that our residents desperately need. We do not need to choose between environment and prosperity; we can have both.
What would your pitch be to a business owner considering a move to Bremerton?
Bremerton is ideally situated along commuter and freight corridors, and adjacent to a huge market and customer base in Seattle. Operating expenses are relatively low and getting lower, and Bremerton’s emergency services have the fastest response times in Kitsap County. The regulatory climate is improving, and we are working hard to reopen Bremerton for business. With a solid employment foundation in the shipyard, Bremerton is securely positioned for the long term.
What is your position on the proposed charter amendment that would allow the council to meet in Kitsap County, but outside of the Bremerton city limits?
We serve at the pleasure of our neighbors. As elected representatives of our neighbors, must ensure that their government is as open, accountable and responsive as possible. Meeting outside of the city reduces the access that our citizens have to their government. I do not feel comfortable depriving the people of access to their elected representatives, so I oppose this part of the amendment.