Letter from Karianne Lisonbee, City Council Candidate


I am running for city council in Syracuse. Will you support my candidacy?

Here is a little about my platform:

Our happiness and economic freedom depend on restricting government to its proper size and scope.

I have several reasons for running for city council.  Our city has some much needed road repairs that need to be addressed, but there has not been a plan presented that satisfactorily solves this problem.Our city has a large debt proportional to our population, we need to reduce spending and not incur more debt. Our city is struggling with revenue because we are losing business base, and many of our citizens are struggling with unemployment or underemployment. I believe in preserving citizen’s property rights and being an advocate for the citizenship rather than for government agencies.

  1. Significant costs for road maintenance and repairs loom ahead. There are two paths before us in Syracuse.  One path may be slightly painful now: cut our spending across the board to pay for the things we need. The other path is sure to prove painful now and perhaps for a long time to come for all of us: borrow money and assess a fee (which is a tax). The Current plan talked of by the council and mayor to meet road costs consists of a $3,000,000, 10 year bond and a “road maintenance fee” added to the utility bill. The City Manager said at the August 9th council meeting that the fee will make a significant dent in the projected cost of road repairs/maintenance. But the numbers point to the need to bond again in the future or raise taxes and/or fees again to cover the cost for long-term maintenance of our roads.Utah Taxpayers recently released a study that rated cities on cost of government.  They divided total expenditures by number of citizens and ranked Syracuse 3rd for cities with over 20,000 residents. Bonding and fees were not considered in their study.  I spoke with a city councilman from a city rated very closely with ours. He said they are a “pay as you go” city and don’t have any bonds.  Another city that is rated proportionately with Syracuse has less than half the bond holdings we have.  Instead of the “tax, borrow and spend” plan we need to cut spending and stop borrowing. Bonding will further exacerbate our fiscal problems in Syracuse and will necessitate the long-term assessment of a fee on the utility bill.  Just as our representatives on the federal level are pushing for “cut, cap and balance”, our leaders in Syracuse are asking us to raise our “debt ceiling” and subsequently, our fees (taxes).  We are currently bonded for around 14.6 million with the final payoff in 2028.  John Adams said, “There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword and the other is by debt.” This applies to cities just as much as it applies to states and nations. If elected, I will make fiscally sound and conservative choices that preserve our financial freedom.  I have looked at the budget closely. I am confident we can find the needed funds to fix our roads without further indebting and taxing the citizens.
  2. The citizens of Syracuse need an advocate for their interests.  As I have attended city council meetings I have noticed that there is more advocacy for government and other agencies than there is advocacy for the citizens. The UDOT/Legacy Highway issue is an example of this. As citizens, we elect our officials and expect them to uphold their oath of office and defend our rights to life, liberty and property. As city councilwoman, I will work to secure citizen’s rights.
  3. Syracuse Business is suffering. At a time when our property values are plummeting, many are seeing lowered incomes or unemployment, and the city is seeing flat revenues. As a nation, state and community we have to be fiscally responsible if we want to survive these tough economic times. This is a time that requires leadership that focuses more on principles of long-term sustainability than political expediency and short-term solutions. We need forward thinking,  principled leadership that understands the lessons of history and foresees the long-term consequences to our actions and the importance of free-market principles applied at the local, state and national level. As city councilwoman, I will make the decisions that will allow long-term sustainability and encourage our local economy to grow.

Here are some of my qualifications:

  •  Current Davis County Senate District 21 Chair
  • Served as Precinct Chair, State and County Delegate
  • Grassroots Advocacy at the State and Federal Level for the  past 5 years, at the local level for the last 2 years
  • Political contributor to Syracuse Islander
  • Volunteer Event Coordinator for Where’s the Line, America? Foundation 
  • Legislative Liaison
  • Founding Member and Executive Board Member of Syracuse Citizens for Awareness and Accountability
  • Consistent attendance at Syracuse City CouncilMeetings and Work Sessions

I would love to talk with you. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me.

Karianne Lisonbee

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