I am acquainted with Justin Shields. He is a master negotiator with a life long commitment to Cedar Rapids. A former City Council colleague of his told me that Shields is quietly effective, honest and respected. He works behind the scenes rather than taking the spotlight.
What I want on the City Council is someone like Shields who does not need to learn on the job like his opponent. The issues are too immediate and demanding. I want someone who always votes in city elections like Shields. His opponent has not voted in any prior Cedar Rapids election.
Ironically, his opponent complained about wavering on the contentious affordable housing issue in District 5. He initially voted against it and it did not pass. He then quietly negotiated a better deal for the district and the city. He then cast the tiebreaking vote to pass that better plan. This was a profile in courage vote compared to his opponent’s empty label of wavering. This is effective governing.
Young people in Cedar Rapids need to become involved in local government. They do that by first serving on city and county boards and commissions like our current and past civic leaders. There they learn the skills for governing.
The residents in District 5 and throughout the city are fortunate that Shields represents them.