Brandon Hunter, Council Ward 2

Brandon Hunter

Address: W. First Street 

Why did you want to run for city council? The reason I am running for city council is because I don’t like the direction this town is going. I don’t believe some on the council treat the fellow townspeople with very much respect. 

I have a passion to help people and to be a voice for those who feel they don’t have one. 

What are some challenges/issues the city will face in the near future? I feel some changes Monticello is going to face in the near future are a population decrease. 

This town has not done well with budgeting money and is passing it on to our community to pick up the tab. We cannot keep wanting and wanting and expecting to keep raising the cost of living here and expect people to stay. 

Monticello is not a wealthy community in the dollar sense. I feel we are at a tipping point at the moment of overextending our seniors who are on fixed incomes and living outside of our means as a community. 

What good things does Monticello have going for itself? Monticello is a close, tight community. When my family and I faced the unimaginable back in 2016, this community came together and really showed love and support for my family and me. 

Monticello is a tourist destination with the Great Jones County Fair, and the Custom Car Show, among the other events we hold each year. 

What are your thoughts on the city working with Main Street Iowa to help revitalize the downtown? If this isn’t the solution, what is? I do agree with keeping the downtown area to a certain standard. I don’t feel that it should have to stay historic in appearance. The year is 2019, not 1935. Keeping the original buildings looking as much as they did years ago is awesome; having a modern feel is not bad either. Having Main Street Iowa help financially with this is a great thing I feel. But it should not be limited to just keeping the old looking old. 

How should the city handle the re-zoning process when it comes to residential development? You mean you want to add modern housing in with old-school housing, but we don’t want to modernize our downtown area… Seems legit to me. If we are going to add new condos and new houses in with homes that have been here 100 years, who not add a little of that to our downtown area as well? 

How should the City of Monticello use and disperse its hotel/motel tax? Should entities such as Jones County Tourism and the Monticello Chamber be allowed a piece of the pie? I believe giving a piece of the pie to Jones County Tourism is a great idea. More people who come to our little town will spend money here, creating jobs and boosting our economic business. 

I don’t know enough about the chamber of commerce yet to give an opinion about that. It’s like owning a business; you have to invest in yourself in order to gain ground in this world. 

Additional comments: I am just a small-town guy trying to do the best I know how. I love this town. My wife and I had a golden opportunity to move to Georgia and looked at houses there, but this is our home. I grew up in Dubuque, but spent my summers here with my dad and moved here when I was 17. I have been here in Monticello for almost 18 years now. I worked at Freese Motors here and Stephen Motors, before taking up a trade as a union ironworker. I’m blue-collar through and through. I struggle paying my bills like everyone else. I’ve been homeless; I’ve had more money than I knew what to do with. Been on both sides of the field. I came from privilege and started my life on my own with the clothes I was wearing, a 19-inch TV, and a rusty Grand Am. I will do everything in my power to do right by this town. I am very honest. I even told my wife on our wedding day I thought her hair looked stupid. This is how honest I am. I would appreciate your vote come Nov. 5. 


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