A crowd runs for Bloomington City Council

As many as five newcomers could join the seven-member City Council next year.

Bloomington voters will face a full city ballot on Nov. 5, with 10 candidates competing for five of the seven City Council seats.

With longtime council members Vern Wilcox, Steve Peterson and Karen Nordstrom not seeking re-election, at least three of those seats are guaranteed to be won by newcomers.

Council seats are considered nonpartisan, and candidates span the political spectrum.

Here’s a rundown of some of their positions.

At-large, four-year seat

Cynthia Bemis Abrams vs. Zavier Bicott

Abrams, a public-relations and leadership consultant, and businessman Bicott are running for the seat held by Nordstrom for the last eight years.

Abrams, 49, is a former member of the Bloomington school and park boards. A lifelong resident of the city, she describes her political views as middle-of-the-road and said she has lived in all five Bloomington ZIP codes.

She said one big challenge is attracting new residents and involving them in city affairs, while managing demand for senior housing and maintaining older properties. “Some neighborhoods might need more love,” she said.

Abrams said that Bloomington is well-managed, but that it may need to increase outreach to neighborhoods and better shape city communication to residents.

Her website is www.council-at-large.com.

Bicott, 29, has lived in Bloomington for 15 years. He sells numismatic coins, and said his business experience means he better understands the fiscal issues facing the city. He has been endorsed by the Libertarian Party and the local Tea Party group.

A first-time candidate, he would like to see voluntary solutions that emphasize personal responsibility to maintain community standards “and still live in a peaceful and lawful community without the city telling us what to do.” He said he questions using tax dollars to support private business development in the city.

His website is http://www.zavierbicott.com/.

District 1, Two-year seat

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