The Cary town council election is scheduled for October 10th, with early voting available from September 21st to October 7th, 2023. Two early voting sites are designated: the Herbert C. Young Community Center in Wake County and New Hope Baptist Church in Chatham County. This election will decide the leadership for the next four years, and it’s important for residents to get acquainted with the candidates’ views and plans.
The Cary Report has reached out and received a statement from every candidate. Here’s who is running and the statement that they provided:
Mayor Harold Weinbrecht
While the Mayor is up for reelection, he is running unopposed. While he was unable to provide a statement to us, he did state the following for Cary TV (which he then reposted on his blog):
“My name is Harold Weinbrecht, and it has been an honor for me to serve as your mayor for the past 16 years. This election cycle I am running unopposed so I would like to take this opportunity to talk about Cary, my colleagues, and highlight the potential danger that threatens Cary’s success.
During my terms as mayor, we have seen Cary become one of the most desirable places to live, work, play, and run a business in the country, all while having the lowest tax rate in Wake County. Cary today is diverse, well educated, environmentally friendly and economically strong and it is my goal to make it even better.
But [I] can’t do it alone. It takes a great nonpartisan council.
Like council member Ryan Eades, who is running in District D. He is fighting hard to make sure district D and western Cary gets the roads, parks, and other resources it needs all while protecting the environment.
And Mayor Pro-Tem Frantz, who was flagbearer for downtown redevelopment. With his leadership we are seeing the citizens’ vision being implemented today.
And council member Lori Bush who is on a mission to create affordable housing in Cary.
As great as Cary is it can change in one election. If partisan politics makes its way into Cary government, we will see divisiveness and gridlock that plagues our state and national government today. And there are partisan candidates in this election! For Cary to continue to be a strong community well into the future we will need a strong, nonpartisan council.
I urge you to research the candidates before you vote on October 10th and keep partisan politics out of Cary. Thank you for voting and thanks for calling Cary home.“
Don Frantz (incumbent, 16 years on the council)
“It has been my honor and privilege to serve as your representative on the Cary Town Council.
We are truly blessed to live in one of the greatest communities in America. I am running for re-election to continue to work to make Cary an even better place to live, work and raise a family, and to give back to the community that has provided so much for me and my family.
During my time on the council, I have worked hard to provide the high levels of service that our citizens demand at the lowest possible cost to you, the taxpayer, and to create an environment that encourages business growth and creates jobs. Quality of life begins with a good paying job so folks can support their families.
I have also been an advocate for increased public safety initiatives because like employment, our quality of life also depends on Cary remaining a safe and secure community; and I have been a champion for our successful downtown revitalization efforts while at the same time fighting to preserve that which makes Cary special.
We have accomplished a lot in Cary, but we still have work to do. Today’s ever-changing world presents new challenges. Keeping Cary great means staying ahead of the curve on issues ranging from infrastructure and infill development to housing affordability and sustainability. Working together we can continue to address complex problems with common sense, data-driven solutions. I am excited about what the future holds for Cary.
Thank you so much for your faith and trust in me to serve as your voice in town government. I hope that through my efforts I have earned your support for another term and I ask for your vote on October 10th.“
Michelle Craig (candidate)
“I am Michelle Craig, and I am asking for your vote for Cary Town Council District B.
I have built my life around public service and advocacy. As a public school teacher in District B, I have embraced the diversity of our community having taught children whose families came from 12 countries and speak 12 different languages. What I’ve found is that diversity is part of what makes Cary great, and we are all more alike than different. With diversity in race and ethnicity, language, culture, socioeconomic status, and family/household make up, it makes sense that the needs of individuals and families are also diverse. We must prioritize meeting ALL of those needs.
I am in the community listening and learning. After knocking nearly 2000 doors, I am hearing residents say that we need more affordable housing, increased tree canopy, increased public transportation stops and frequency, and expanded access to sidewalks, greenways, and separated bike lanes. These are among my top priorities.
The Town of Cary has a Consolidated Plan focusing on housing for low- and moderate-income residents. Though steps are being taken for this plan, progress is not happening fast enough. We need a majority on the council that will really prioritize and be champions for affordable housing. I will be one of hose champions.
I support getting resident input, working with community partners and Wake County, and learning from other municipals to help find solutions to better meet the housing needs of our community.
We are in a housing crisis because supply is not keeping up with demand. Also, zoning requirements are contributing to the problem. We need a variety of housing types to meet our community needs. We need to consider more housing options in residential neighborhoods and plan affordable housing near transit.
Go to MichelleCraigforCary.com to read more about my priorities. Together we can make Cary more affordable, equitable, and sustainable. I ask for your vote for Cary Town Council District B.“
Ryan Eades (incumbent, 1 year)
“My name is Ryan Eades and I am running for my seat on the Cary Town Council in District D. As a husband, father of four, and longtime resident of western Cary, I have witnessed first-hand the transformation of our region and this is partly what drove me to apply for the Planning and Zoning board where I served for 6 years, chairing the board my final year. As a volunteer for the town, I learned what it meant to be present and give back to the community, something I have taken with me to my current role serving on the Council.
Even though I believe Cary is moving in the right direction there are still some areas I believe we should be focusing on. The first of these is connectivity, specifically connecting gaps in our sidewalks and greenways along with connecting people. This past spring, I led the first-ever town/HOA networking event that included inviting representatives from the 30 HOAs, which I hope to make into an annual event.
Another area of focus is balancing growth and encouraging more mixed-use developments in my district along with strengthening and supporting public safety efforts and improving rescue services.
Lastly, I want to focus on environmental conservation and being mindful of the impact all our decisions have on our environment. I’m excited about projects like the White Oak Creek Conservation Area that will serve as focal points to promote environmental education and outreach.
Given my background and experience, I’m well qualified to continue representing the residents of District D and I ask that you vote for me, Ryan Eades for Cary Town Council on October 10th.”
Rachel Jordan (candidate)
“I have had family in the Triangle for most of my life and watched the incredible way it has changed. And yet, I only moved here myself seven years ago. I believe that these two perspectives – that of both the newcomer and someone familiar with Cary – give me a unique ability to chart our future.
My hands-on-experience as a volunteer in both our public schools (through the PTA) and in our political process have helped me build the knowledge and relationships necessary to get things done in Cary.
My experience living in similar fast-growing suburbs in both Northern Virginia and Atlanta has given me a keen sense of the problems our town faces and the solutions that are available.
Like those places, Cary suffers from a lack of affordable housing. I believe that we must allow more diverse types of housing while also doing more to keep current residents in their homes and provide housing opportunities for essential workers in our community like teachers, first responders, and service workers. Making sure that the people who work here can also live here reduces traffic on our roads, is better for the environment, and promotes diversity.
I am eager to seek out data-driven solutions that provide positive knock-on effects. For instance, I support initiatives that protect our tree canopy and encourage solar power installations because they directly impact local heat effects and air pollution, but also help to combat global climate change.
These sorts of common-sense, progressive ideas that recognize the interconnectedness of our issues and the possibility of broad-based solutions are why the Democratic party has endorsed me for Cary Town council.“
Sarika Bansal (candidate)
“I am a mom, wife, cybersecurity executive and a successful businesswoman. My husband and I believe in giving back and are active members of several non profit organizations. Currently I am serving on the advisory board of NW Cary Ymca and president of my community’s HOA.
Early on, I realized that hard-work, sincerity and dedication are important ingredients for success.
We moved to Cary 8 years ago and the connection with Cary was instant. Moving to Cary is the best decision of our lives. Cary is home.
As I started my campaign, I spoke to many of you. I knocked on 1800 doors where growth and density came up during the discussions. Lack of diversity in current council, School overcrowding and quality of life were top concerns.
Cary is a magnet for Corporates and we are growing. While growth is good, it has its own drawbacks, if not planned well.
If elected, I will make sure that every voice is heard before a decision is taken in town hall. I will prioritize the discussions with Chatham & Wake county school boards, traffic assessment, expansion of green level church road, transportation, environmental sustainability, community center for all ages, affordable housing for people that work in the town and senior citizens. We can do all this and more!
West Cary is 50% diverse and it is important to have representation with new perspective and fresh ideas. Cary is in a unique place of transformation and needs a leader that is pragmatic, honest and transparent to the residents of Western Cary.
You can count on me for being a leader that will also put our people first before a decision is made. I humbly ask for your vote in October. My website Sarika4Cary.com for information on my platform.”
Lori Bush (12 years)
“It has been an honor and privilege to have served as an At-Large Councilmember for the last 12 years. During that time, Cary has received numerous accolades and awards, and continued to be a great place to live, work, play, learn, own a business, and raise a family.
As an engineer I know how to make data-driven decisions, and we need to continue to balance growth while having a great quality of life. I have lived a life of service – from volunteering at Food Banks, to being a Big Brother/Big Sister, to serving on an HOA board or volunteering at non-profits like the East Coast Greenway, and NC Museum of Natural Sciences – community service is in my DNA.
More importantly, I have a record of getting things done, specifically in the areas of balanced growth, affordable housing, environmental sustainability and supporting the vitality of our community.
- Creation of Cary-specific Housing Plan addressing Housing Affordability, land acquisition for Cary’s first Town-sponsored Affordable Housing development
- Doubled “Healthy Homes” rehabilitation program funds
- Established and expanded Food Waste Program and new Compost Pilot
- Originated Watershed Protection funding to protect clean water upstream
- Created task force for human relations, inclusion, and diversity
- Initiated acquisition of 1.8 MW solar facility
- Formation of Transportation and Mobility Task Force, Bike Plan Focus Group, E-Bikes on greenways, ensured separated bike lanes part of Fenton and identified new/future separated bike lanes
- Brought forward Wake County’s nondiscrimination ordinance to Cary
- Created Technology Task Force – identifying significant technology and social media improvements in Cary (FB, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, 311, QR codes, Open Data Portal, etc.)
- Served on Wake County Transit board to identify solutions for Transit to and from, Cary
- Brought Paid Parental Leave to Cary employees“
Mary Insprucker (candidate)
“The Mayor has cautioned that partisanship is a threat to our Cary. I am here to tell you that I am a MODERATE- no divisiveness, extremism, or polarization. People are tired of it. I am laser focused on what’s best for Cary residents and getting back to the business of governing. As your At-Large representative, all attention will be on the priorities that truly impact your life every single day.
Your agenda is my agenda and I am already working on the concerns I am hearing after knocking on over 1,000 doors: Affordable Housing (our kids, our firefighters, our police and teachers can’t afford to live here), Environment (tree canopy retention, storm water runoff, water quality), Safety (prevention, as many police as we need), Intelligent Growth (keeping up with infrastructure), Safeguards for Seniors (aging in place, transportation options, dedicated communication platform for Cary senior residents).
I approach issues from the perspective of a voter, not a politician. I research, investigate and challenge every concern and only act after I hear YOUR input. I will take promises off the shelf and into fruition. Because I represent ALL, it is no wonder Democrats, Republicans and Unaffiliated are considering Mary Insprucker for their vote.
I am supported by many, strong community leaders who know my expertise as a former consultant to Cary, past Regional Director of one of the largest non-profits in the Midwest (I am the only candidate to oversee an affordable housing program), and Board of Director member for the American Red Cross, will serve us well.
My pledge to you is this: hard work, transparency, approachability, and kind, smart, courageous leadership.
I want YOU to win this election by casting a vote in YOUR favor-vote Mary for Cary Insprucker for Cary Town Council At-Large.“
Matthew Gronke (candidate)
“My name is Matthew Gronke. I have lived in Cary since 1992, and I am currently a stay-at-home dad with a lovely wife of 19 years and a 4-year-old son.
Many people don’t know this, but the unofficial motto for the Town of Cary Government is “The Local Government that Doesn’t Exist.” Consider what that means to you. To me, it means a town government that is inactive and unresponsive to the needs of the community. If the current Cary Town Council members agree that their local government “doesn’t exist,” then why are they even running for office? What do they plan to do in their positions if they want their government to not exist?
The truth is that the Town of Cary is a local government that is flush with cash. They are happy to have Tesla police cars and robot-powered buses while ignoring projects that don’t interest them. I want to transform the Town of Cary government into a local government that does exist to serve you. I want the government to be more responsive to working on projects that benefit the community instead of just spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on flashy toys. I believe this starts with transforming Cary into a town that lives up to its messaging.
For example, the Town of Cary advertises itself as a bicycle-friendly community, so it’s time for it to start looking like one. Despite the positive transformation in the downtown, little has been done to make it a bicycle friendly area. Chatham Street, Acadamy Street, and Walnut Street should, at a minimum, have painted bicycle lanes and turn boxes to provide safe areas for people to get around downtown on a bicycle.
Join me in improving this community. Thank you.“
You can read more about the election on Cary’s official website here.