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Dardenne Prairie board turns over

In two years, the Dardenne Prairie Board of Aldermen has completely turned over.

Three incumbent aldermen lost their bids for re-election, according to unofficial results in the April 7 municipal election. In April of 2014, three new aldermen also were elected.

Two aldermen are elected in each of the city’s three wards in alternate years. They serve two-year terms.

Kevin Klingerman received 472 votes or 81.94 percent, defeating incumbent David Kampelman who received 104 votes or 18.06 percent in the Ward 1 race. Kampelman had served as president of the board as well as a member of the city’s planning and zoning commission and board of adjustment.

In a closer race in Ward 2, Blake Nay received 255 votes or 53.24 percent to incumbent Robert Menichino’s 221 votes or 46.14 percent.

John Gotway was the easy winner in Ward 3, receiving 507 votes or 74.67 percent, followed by incumbent Sharon West’s 92 votes or 13.55 percent and Mike Claspille, who received 80 votes or 11.78 percent. West had been an alderman in the ward for the last 15 years.

New faces on the board elected last April were David Zucker in Ward 1, Doug Santos who defeated then incumbent Robert Penn III, and Dan Koch who defeated incumbent Mike Conroy and Judith Helms in Ward 3.

Some Dardenne Prairie residents have clashed with city officials over development proposals that they fear may encroach on local subdivisions.

Since 2013, Villages of Bainbridge subdivision residents opposed development proposals for the 175-acre tract sought by the Cora Bopp Limited Partnership. To appease residents, the partnership previously removed plans for 288 apartments, a plan to extend Devon Drive, and a single family homes proposal, lowering the size of the tract down to about 87 acres. Mayor Pam Fogarty has said the property will generate needed tax revenue to pay for city services. Fogarty was elected to a four-year term in 2013.

Several of the candidates in this years aldermanic races mentioned development as a major issue.

Klingerman, whose ward includes the Villages of Bainbridge, said in an election questionnaire for Mid-Rivers Newsmagazine that he shared a new vision with residents of balancing future development with the city’s lifestyle.

“If there is going to be commercial development, I’d prefer to see a nice art gallery rather than a lumber yard,” he stated in the questionnaire.

Gotway said in his response to the questionnaire that some decisions made by the city didn’t reflect “the will of the people.”

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