Hoover mayor draws two challengers for Aug. 23 municipal election

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Hoover mayor Gary Ivey has drawn two challengers in the Birmingham suburb’s Aug. 23 municipal elections. Former Hoover City Fire Marshal Frank Brocato and Hoover City Schools Foundation President Steve McClinton will appear on the ballot, in what has become a highly contested race.

Here is a quick review of each candidate and their proposed plans for the city, in alphabetical order:

Frank BrocatoFrank Brocato

Brocato, 63, served 42 years in the city’s fire department before retiring in 2015. With his background in public safety, Brocato has said he will make police and fire one of the top priorities for his administration, should he be elected.

“My commitment to public safety will never be compromised,” Brocato told The Hoover Sun. “I think our city was built on providing a great public safety program.”

Another issue for Brocato is increasing school funding. “Our school system is running a deficit every year and having to draw from their reserves,” said Brocato. “My fear is that if the school system begins to suffer, I believe it has just a domino effect,” causing property values and businesses to suffer. “I don’t think this city wants to see that happen.”

Where to read more:

Gary IveyGary Ivey (I)

Ivey, the owner of Hoover’s Crest Cadillac and the former city council president, has been mayor since his appointment to serve out the remainder of former mayor Tony Petelos‘s term in 2011. He was re-elected without a challenger in 2012.

Ivey is seen as the establishment candidate in the race, and in a year where a plurality of Alabamians voted for anti-establishment presidential candidate Donald Trump, many incumbents are rightly taking extra precautions. Ivey began the campaign with more than $140,000 on hand, and is spending the money with alacrity.

In the last several years he has bristled at increasing funding to the Hoover public schools, which has remained at around $2 million annually since a precipitous drop from around $8 million in 2008 — likely the main issue that brought his challengers.

Where to read more:

Steve McClintonSteve McClinton

On temporary leave from his volunteer position as president of the Hoover City Schools Foundation, McClinton, 47, a financial planner and father to three children in Hoover City Schools, has made no qualms about framing his entire campaign around the issue of school funding, which he believes Ivey must own.

“The the schools go, so goes our city,” he proclaims in a video recently posted on his Facebook page.

A late entry into the race, McClinton has a lot of ground to make up against the other two men, who have been campaigning since this spring, but he isn’t concerned.

“Families, companies, and industries move to Hoover because they know it is an excellent place to raise a family. Once our schools start declining, so will our city, and I don’t believe the current administration is doing nearly enough to support Hoover City Schools.”

Where to read more:

Where to see them all speak

The three mayoral candidates will meet for two forums before election day. The first event will be held Aug. 9 at 7 p.m. at Shades Crest Baptist Church, while the second is on Tuesday, Aug. 16 at 6 p.m.at the Wynfrey Hotel in the Riverchase Galleria.

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