On Aug. 27, you will once again have the opportunity to exercise your given right to vote — this time in the Phoenix City Council District 6 election.

That day, residents of District 6 will choose a City Council member who will have a direct influence on Phoenix and the Ahwatukee Foothills community.

There are two candidates in the race: incumbent Sal DiCiccio, a Republican, and opponent Karlene Keogh Parks, running as an Independent. The two have different views on the issues that are going to shape Phoenix in the coming years.

In the past, newspapers have had a tradition of backing, or endorsing, a candidate prior to Election Day. In fact, just a few years back the Ahwatukee Foothills News endorsed a candidate.

For this election, it’s going to be the decision of the AFN not to endorse a candidate. Today, we see the role of the paper is to educate and inform you, the voters, with information about each candidate. Our goal is not to influence you to vote for (or against) a candidate, but give you the background and facts you need. That way, come Aug. 27, you can make the best decision for this community.

Over the next two months, AFN will present a series of stories related to the election, as well as interviews with each candidate. We will work to ask similar questions to each candidate, giving equal press time while addressing the issues.

The AFN is also co-hosting a candidate forum, in partnership with the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce. Both candidates will be present from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on July 24 at the Grace Inn, 10831 S. 51st St., and we encourage the public to attend.

The forum will include four panelists, a moderator, and time for a few questions from the audience at the end.

In addition, we are working to record the event, giving you the ability to head to ahwatukee.com after the forum to watch and review the questions and answers from each candidate.

The city of Phoenix has some uphill challenges this year. It still needs to balance the budget, get some pension issues in check, and continue to make it easy for businesses to do business in Phoenix. The Ahwatukee Foothills community is very focused on the Loop 202, however, the City Council is not directly tied to that decision, it’s ultimately a move the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) will decide on. The city will likely continue to push for discussions with the Gila River Indian Community with the goal that ADOT makes a decision best serving the residence of Ahwatukee and the Indian community.

Early ballets will go out at the end of July. At that point, our goal is that each of you has the information to make an educated decision between two qualified candidates. You should be able to vote with confidence. That is our goal and priority at the Ahwatukee Foothills News.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7901 or kjohnson@ahwatukee.com.

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