Gavagan wants to make Marshalltown a better place

Phillip Gavagan says he wants to change Marshalltown.

The second-time mayoral candidate said he wants things to get better in Marshalltown.

“There’s been a lot of bad stuff happening around town and I’d like to see that change,” Gavagan said.

But how to create change is an idea he’s still developing.

“There’s no one real goal. It’s just I want to do what I can to help this community get better and back to the way it was when I was a kid,” Gavagan said. “It used be people were proud of being from Marshalltown. Now if you ask people where they’re from they aren’t real excited about it.”

In particular he said crime is a real problem.

“I think the police department needs to shift their view on what’s more important for them to be doing,” Gavagan said. “Maybe pay more attention to the methamphetamine use around here rather than worrying as much about somebody going five miles an hour over the speed limit.”

Gavagan also said small business development is important, and he wants to help in this effort.

“I know some people that have tried to start business here in town that city council has shut down,” Gavagan said.

Gavagan said he believes the city council should represent their wards and the at-large council members should represent the town as a whole.

“I’ve seen the city council approving and passing things that are not highly supported by the community,” Gavagan said. “They are basically pet projects of the council and I don’t think that’s right. They should represent the town as a whole not just what they want.”

Gavagan has lived in Marshalltown his entire life. He has four sisters and two brothers living in surrounding communities. He said his parents and grandparents live in Marshalltown.

In addition to his job at Fisher Controls, he worked at Lennox for five years and JBS for two years.

“I love my community,” Gavagan said.