COLUMBIA – The man who ran against Michael Trapp for the City Council’s second ward seat is back again for another go-around.
His name is Paul Love.
"I'm running for the second ward, for the second time,” Love said. "It's no secret that Michael Trapp and I have different viewpoints on government.”
Love described Trapp as an “expansionist,” and said Trapp “has never found a tax that he didn't like, or a fee increase that he didn't approve.”
“I don't plan on being that person. I'd like to do more with less,” Love said.
Love explained one of his primary motives for re-running was the TIF tax for the Broadway Hotel downtown. Love also said a recent newspaper article sparked his drive to run again. He saw that Trapp was being paid by the Columbia Improvement District (CID) Downtown over $100 an hour to talk to homeless people. He said he continued to dig a little deeper into the issue and discovered the same guy who’s a board member on CID’s council is the same man whose hotel just got approved for the city’s new TIF tax.
“I think that’s a real conflict of interest and that’s an ethical hole a mile-wide,” Love stated. “I don’t think that’s the kind of government that I want, I don’t think that’s the kind of government the city wants.”
If elected Second Ward Councilman, Love said he would like to he would like to work on decreasing the crime rates in town, and recognizes that doing so would begin with the Columbia Police Department. He says there’s a lack of funding for the department, but if local businesses and organizations could sponsor the certification and training costs of one officer, they would be able to assist men in the city who would like to serve their community through law enforcement, but can’t afford it.
Love would also like to create more affordable housing in Columbia, beginning with changing the building codes, to improve housing options for citizens, and used the tiny houses as an example.
Love said one thing he and Trapp do agree on is that Columbia is a great place to live, and said it’s up to the residents to make the right decision for the seat.
"Honestly, it really is, it's the people's choice,” Love said. “If the people feel that I'm the guy they want to represent, they'll be willing to help me out.”
Love said his decision to run was last minute. He was hoping someone else would run against him, but no one else did.
“So, I walked downtown, picked up an application and spent a freezing week walking in the rain trying to get those signatures.”
Love ran against Trapp for the Second Ward Council seat in 2015 and lost by 83 votes.