Port Byron leadership hopefuls at odds over direction
Two men with political experience but little else in common politically are facing off in the race for the presidency of the Village of Port Byron.
The differences between Republican Kevin Klute and independent Bruce Peterson could be seen in a profile in the Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus recently.
Incumbent Klute, 56, has been village president for four years after first serving as a trustee. He previously operated a restaurant and now works as an estate planner.
During his tenure, Klute has established an infrastructure committee dedicated to village revitalization as well as an economic development committee to promote Port Byron as a recreational hub and ensure the maintenance of cultural events.
“I believe the biggest challenge for Port Byron is to keep moving forward and be visible,” Klute, a 20-year Port Byron resident, told the Dispatch-Argus.
Peterson, 74, argues that the top priority for the village is leadership, emphasizing his support for nonpartisan elections.
A former Army captain and retired dentist, Peterson also has served as a Port Byron village trustee, as well as on its planning and zoning committee. He helped launch a comprehensive village plan and created incentives for local projects.
Peterson served with the Rock Island County-Regional Office of Education and Moline school boards as well as leadership positions in Moline. He is on the Rock Island Waste Management Commission and numerous civic and church organizations.
“With stronger leadership, the village will be able to improve services to its residents, merchants, schools and to our many visitors," Peterson said. He added that being retired affords him the time required "to meet the many demands of the office of president."