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Locals run for Ward 3 seat in Polson

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POLSON — Mary Frances Caselli and Ken Siler are seeking a four-year term as Ward 3 Polson City Commissioner.

Mary Frances Caselli is self-employed, and she and her husband Gino have lived in the area for 10 years.

Ken Siler has been a Polson resident since 1998. He retired from Ford Aerospace in 1996 and then worked as a civilian contractor for the Air Force Satellite Control Facility in Sunnyvale, Calif. Siler graduated from Missoula County High School and attended the Butte School of Mines.

He and his life partner Agnes Rinehart moved to Polson because Siler’s father lived here.

The candidates were asked what they believe is the most important local issue,  the most important state issue and how  they would use their new position, if elected, to bring about  solutions?

 “I believe the most important local issue is first and foremost that there be open government and fair leadership that represents all of the citizens of Polson,” Caselli said. “The input of the citizens should be of utmost importance and the city government needs to be responsive to that input. Then the city can move forward with effective business building, job growth, and fiscal responsibility. We need to inform the taxpayers of how their money is being used and listen to what the taxpayers expect and want of their city government.”  

“Once our own city government is in order, state issues can then be addressed,” Caselli said. “If I am elected, my position will be to gather input from my constituents and vote according to their will.”

Siler felt the most important local issue was to get the right City Manager. 

“After following the selection of Mark Shrives, I think we are there,” Siler said.   

“Running a city requires openness and continuity. We must stop this presumption of favoritism, real or imagined.,” Siler said.

Caselli and Siler were asked what, if elected, they would need from the people in the community?

Caselli said if she were elected, she would be working for the citizens of Polson “so the question should not be what I need from them but rather what the citizens of Polson need from me.” 

“I would like to reach out to and hear from all the residents of my ward as to how they want me to vote as a commissioner on the city council.”

Siler’s vision for this community in 10 years is to see that it is still the great place to live that it is today.  

“Everybody wants better streets,” Siler said.  “We have to just figure out how to pay for them. Our street department is doing a great job at road maintenance with the limited resources.” 

Saying it’s not her vision that matters, Caselli said “it is the vision of those who live in Polson and her surrounds that matters. What I have gathered from talking to other Polson residents is that they hope that in the future Polson will be a city where people enjoy living, are not burdened with onerous taxes, have representation that is open and responsible and employ a city government that is fiscally responsible and not intrusive into their lives.” 

A third candidate on the ballot, Bill D. Smith, said he intended to withdraw from the race but missed the deadline.


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