Centralia Mayoral Candidates Forum

March 23, 2021

Election Day is Tuesday, April 6. The Greater Centralia Chamber of Commerce held a forum last Thursday night at Kaskaskia College for Centralia mayor and council candidates. Bryan Kuder and Herb Williams are running for mayor for the remainder of the 2019 four year term for mayor. In 2019 Kuder won on election night, but was not seated because of a residency requirement. The matter is still in court. Herb Williams was appointed to fill the vacant mayor’s seat until the next election.

In their opening statements at the forum, Kuder said, “I reside in the city of Centralia. I grew up in Centralia and after a long career in law enforcement positions, I came back home. I’m running to change Centralia, to bring back pride in our community.

Williams says he believes in Centralia, his hometown. “After a long career, I retired back here in the city that I love. Two years ago I was asked to help my hometown and I accepted it though I knew it would be a challenge. In life I’ve always lived with the motto ‘do the right thing.’”

On their stance on the sales tax increase on the ballot, Kuder and Williams both agree it should be passed to pay for current and future needs.

Two new ideas were presented at the forum. Kuder thought the city should sell off property it has acquired in the past. Williams laid out plans for the vacant iconic Illinois Theater. “We should start small immediately and build it up.”

In closing, Kuder wants to build a city his grandchildren will be proud of and want to stay.

Williams said he’s had to make hard decisions in the past two years and will continue to do so if elected. I want to finish the programs and projects the city has started.

Visit www.facebook.com/shoppers.weekly to watch the candidate forum.

Pictured are Bryan Kuder and Herb Williams, Incumbent Mayor

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