Name: Richard F. “Dick” KennedyAge: 63How long living in Vero Beach: Moved to Vero in 1999Place of Birth: Enid, Okla.Occupation: Commercial Real Estate salesMarital/Family Status: Married to Lyn Wilkins, Memphis, Tenn., in 1967. Two male children ages 43 and 34, both live in Tampa.
Please list Civic and Volunteer Leadership Experience including title & position and Organization including dates and locations.
Current member of Vero Beach Planning and Zoning Commission since 2007. Member of Indian River Memorial Hospital Foundation since 2008.
What issues motivated you to run for this office and what do you hope to accomplish during your term?
I was principally motivated by outrageous electric bills. I would intend to rectify this situation by the sale of the electric plant to a qualified buyer. However, I would want to be convinced we are receiving a fair price and that our community will be the beneficiary of a reasonable rate structure. Other items of concern include the budget and its process; attracting business; keeping our real estate tax rates low; retaining our young population in Vero; and conveying to the outside public the unique qualities of Vero.
What is your position on the potential sale of the Vero Beach electric utility? If the price and conditions were right, would you support selling? What would keep you from supporting a possible sale?
I am generally in favor of a sale of the electric utility to a third party under the right terms and conditions. If the terms and conditions are not fair and equitable and appropriately compensate us for our investment and its market value, I would have to consider selling part or seek outside management assistance.
Do you support considering the possibility of merging the city’s water and sewer system with that of the county’s? What factors would you consider in making a determination whether or not such a merger should happen?
I would consider merging the city’s water and sewer system with that of the county if it is economically feasible and we are assured of fair treatment in rates and service in the years to come. My decision would be based solely on what is in it for us.
The city is currently looking for a new City Manager to replace out-going Jim Gabbard. What qualities would you look for in a viable candidate?
He must be well organized with excellent budget and people skills from a progressive environment that encouraged innovation and follow through.
How do you plan to work with Councilman Heady if elected to the dais?
Decorum is essential to productivity. I have always believed that we must be civil to all people from all walks of life and that if you follow those principles you will succeed. I expect others to treat me the same. We will have to see what happens.