Joseph Brian Scapa – Candidate for Wichita City Council – District 2

Candidates

Biographical Information:

  • Real estate broker/instructor with 19 years experience
  • Member, Realtors of South Central Kansas
  • Member, Central Christian Church
  • Former USD 259 substitute teacher
  • Three years management experience in the service industry
  • Alumni, Beta Theta Pi
  • State Representative 2011-2012 District #87
  • State Representative 2015-2016 District #88
  • Attended Wichita State University
  • Attended Tabor College
  • President of Association of Collegiate Entrepreneurs, while attending WSU

Personal Information: Married to Melissa, 4 children

Campaign website/Facebook/Social Media: Joseph Scapa

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

Clean water! It is embarrassing to the City of Wichita that we have allowed our water treatment facility to get to the point that the city has nearly avoided several major crisis that could have shut down water to the entire city. We don’t want to be known as the next Flint, Michigan.

We must address the situation in an open and transparent way. The public’s trust must be restored. The project should be put back out for open bids and the contractor who is most qualified to meet the public’s need for good, clean, drinking water should be the one the contract is awarded to.

How do you propose to grow the Wichita economy?

By keeping our tax base low, maintaining our infrastructure (roads, clean water, etc), promoting our quality of life, and the low cost of living in our area.

Foster the entrepreneurial spirit in Wichita again. Encourage and promote the WSU Innovation Campus. Wichita is known for our great entrepreneurs and we must provide the resources needed to our next entrepreneurs in order to create an environment for new business and job development.

Government does not grow the economy, but we can help with creating the ideal environment for the Wichita economy to grow through the private sector.

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

I believe we must be careful not to develop every square inch of the east bank. It is important to have open space that people can use and enjoy for recreation along the river. Whatever the city decides to do with downtown, it should include Century II. I believe all feasible options for Century II to be repurposed should remain on the table. Century II is iconic to the Wichita skyline and is like a brand or a logo to Wichita. However, I would support the final outcome being determined by the voters by public referendum.

What is your vision for the baseball stadium & Delano?

The council has not been realistic about there being enough parking or its proximity to the stadium or Delano. People with limited mobility or those attending with small children may choose not to attend events downtown rather than walk long distances.

For future projects in the Delano area or anywhere downtown, real estate professionals and parking consultants should be included in the conversation to evaluate parking options before a project is started, not after.

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

My vision is to help Wichita become the most family-friendly and job-friendly city in the region by promoting strong family values, working to promote innovative ways to adapt and expand our current industries for future job needs of our community, aggressively promoting exports, taking advantage of our geographical location and developing Wichita as a shipping hub, and expanding industry innovations like composite technology.

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

Establish a citizen review board to look into establishing meaningful and effective ethical reforms for city staff and elected officials regarding gifts. Unlimited gifts to the council members is problematic and should be addressed. Eliminate cronyism or the perception of cronyism. The city must restore the public’s trust and eliminate the perception of behind the scenes favoritism.

We should institute a professional real estate review board for large development projects, made up of commercial real estate professionals who have no financial interest in the proposed project to give an unbiased opinion to ensure the public’s best interest is being protected. All council votes should be easily accessible by the public on the city website.

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