Columbia residents attend election forum

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COLUMBIA - Mid-Missouri citizens made their voices heard as they came together Thursday to participate in one of the last public forums before the upcoming April 7 municipal elections. 

Around 40 residents asked candidates running in the first, second and sixth wards questions at the Columbia Country Club. Residents asked candidates questions about their stances on topics ranging from public safety to infrastructure issues. 

The forum, called the 'Last Word,' was hosted by four political organizations in mid-Missouri: the Missouri Civil Liberties Association, Mid-Missouri NORML, Empower Missouri, and Keep Columbia Free. Mitch Richards, the treasurer of Keep Columbia Free, said he was glad residents showed up to ask candidates questions. 

"Tonight we just hope to make sure make sure the candidates have to answer for all of the questions out there they haven't been asked yet," Richards said.

Residents also voiced their support or concerns about Propositions 1 and 2. Proposition 1 would allow Columbia Water and Light to issue $63.1 million in bonds to fund city utility projects at the cost of a 6 percent increase in utility billing over five years. Proposition 2 would increase stormwater utility rates to around $4 for the average residence to fund stormwater utility projects.

To see the complete ballot of the April 7 election, click here for the Boone County Clerk's website.