Killeen mayoral candidate Dick Young said the biggest problem facing the city is apathy.
Young, 61, who filed for election Jan. 31, sat down with the Herald afterward for a question-and-answer session.
He said after much deliberation and eyeing the city’s top-elected position for a “long time,” he felt like now was the right time to run.
“I have the time necessary to commit to being a full-time mayor,” he said. “I feel like Killeen needs a vision. It needs a sense of direction that it’s been lacking, and I believe that I can bring that to the table.”
Young, a local small-business owner, served on the Killeen City Council from 2000 to 2006, and said he is ready to continue his vision for the city.
“We did a lot of great things when I was on the council,” he said. “If you look at most of the new things that happened in Killeen, they happened during the time I served: the airport, the conference center, the hike and bike trail, the senior citizens center, the state (veterans) cemetery. ... Those things were all completed or started under our term.”
Young said the biggest challenge he sees in the city is apathy. “We have a highly transient population. People are here and they really are here for a short enough time, and they don’t get the sense of (staying) that they should,” he said. “I think that we need to change the way that we present ourselves to our citizens. I think that we need to be a more open, loving, caring community that has opportunities for everyone.”
Young said he believes he’s the best candidate for the job because he can “devote 100 percent of my time to the citizens of Killeen.”
“That’s what they deserve,” he said. “They don’t deserve someone who is going to be off taking care of other things. They need someone who is going to be accountable, someone who is going to be approachable. I can devote my time to this and I think that has been sorely missed.”
Young is a consultant for Centex Metals, a company that submitted a proposal recently vying for a contract with the city for its single-stream recycling program. Young said in order to dissolve any conflict of interest that could arise, the company removed itself from the bidding process.