Beckie Jenek – Candidate for Wichita City Council – District 4


Biographical Information:

  • Small business consultant
  • Lifelong resident of the Wichita metro area
  • Attended our area public schools
  • Have focused on small business accounting and operations management for the last 20 years
  • Recently, I began specializing in the renewable energy industry
  • Active member of the community through neighborhood associations, non-profit board management, church, and the local theatre community
  • Currently serve as the secretary for the Southwest Neighborhood Association

Personal Information: I am single, and have an adult son.

Campaign website/Facebook/Social Media:

What specific Wichita issue deserves your immediate attention and how do you plan to address it?

Amending our city council’s code of ethics is a top priority, and fits well with the reason I chose to run, in the first place: a lack of transparency in our city government. I believe amendments to our city’s code of ethics should be accomplished without haste; it is integral to rebuilding the trust placed upon us by the electorate.

Equally important, we must address shortages in our police and fire departments, ensure the safety of our public water, partner with other agencies to address behavioral health issues in our community, and work to update and expand our transit system to those areas in our city which are under-served.

How do you propose to grow the Wichita economy?

Wichita has tremendous unrealized potential for economic growth. However, we need to continue to adopt diverse visions in regards to the kind of regional economy we want to create for the future of our city. Entertainment districts are fine, but bars, restaurants and retail shops are a small beginning.

It is time to turn our focus to industries and organizations that offer diverse career opportunities, attract multi-generational talent, and demonstrate growth potential. One way we do this is by giving young entrepreneurs a seat at the table. I will fight to ensure that our city has diverse visions, and a sustainable plan in place, to promote, and help develop the resources and infrastructure they need to keep their businesses here, and end the migration of talent out of our city.

What is your vision for the east bank of the Arkansas River? What do you want to see happen with Century II?

I have repeatedly asked this question to residents in my district, and there are many diverse opinions as to what needs to be done with Century ll. A vast number of them would like to see it renovated, and repurposed, in addition to building a new performing arts and convention center; these residents value this iconic building, and prioritize historic preservation over demolition. However, we must do so in a way which ensures that the organizations currently calling Century II, “home,” do not go dark. I firmly believe that a project of this magnitude, given the financial investment and sentimental nature, should be left to a public vote.

What is your vision for the baseball stadium & Delano?

We must continue to work with Delano United and the Delano Neighborhood Association to ensure that development projects in the area fit within the Delano Neighborhood Master Plan, and mesh well with the unique, and historic character of the area.

Additionally, we must address the parking deficiency, which should have been addressed prior to ground-breaking on the new stadium. The clock is quickly approaching first pitch, and residents dread that their neighborhoods will soon be lined with an overflow of vehicles. This is an unfair burden to taxpayers, who begged the city to address this issue earlier.

Describe your vision for Wichita’s future and how you plan to achieve it.

My vision for Wichita’s future is a city which encourages citizen participation in local government; a city which takes a proactive approach to celebrating our differences and our similarities; a city which combats retaliation against city employees, vendors, and contractors; a city which values the voice of small businesses and invites them to have a seat at the table; a city which values public art, transit, and quality of life; a city with clean, safe drinking water, and high air quality; a city which holds elected leaders accountable; a city where elected officials advocate for their constituents with other government agencies; and a city which stands up for what is right and says, “Bigotry is not welcome here.”

The key here, and in all issues, is communication. The most important facet of communication is listening. Through respectful dialogue we learn about others, and about ourselves in the process. And by bringing all the stakeholders to the table, we can build a sustainable plan…together.

Some citizens have expressed concern about a lack of transparency in city government decisions. How will you work to address those concerns from voters?

In addition to amending the code of ethics, and establishing ethical oversight, I will not play games with city procedures, budgets, or processes, or “pass the buck” onto city staff. Our government officials cannot be allowed to disburse millions of OUR tax dollars behind closed doors. I will fight to end no bid contracts, inform local businesses of the city contract bidding process, and push for public discussion of any ordinances dealing with the city leasing, buying, or selling any property.

As your City Councilwoman, I will not vote for any proposal or ordinance, via consent agenda, while there is organized opposition – each person deserves to have their voice on the record. Additionally, I will work to repeal the ordinance passed in December, 2015, which allows city council members to accept corporate/PAC donations. City business should not be hindered by cronyism and partisan politics.

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