SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Candidates vying to become Mayor of Springfield, along with city council hopefuls met at Missouri State Monday afternoon. 

Not to debate, but to share their ideas for the future of the Queen City in front of the next generation. 

“The younger vote is always important, just as important is the seat at the table that they have,” Incumbent mayoral candidate Ken McClure said. “[You have to] be able to talk about what is a concern to them.” 

His challenger, Melanie Bach, who this past summer led the charge on Question 1, the ballot measure for Springfield voters whether to rezone part of Galloway Village or not, says being present for youth voters is important as well. 

“I think it’s important for me to be everywhere that I can be,” Bach said. 

Ozarksfirst spoke to Bach and McClure about what some of their goals were, and both candidates mentioned the comprehensive Forward SGF plan. 

“The forward SGF plan needs somebody who can look at it with a fresh set of eyes and not trip over how to implement it,” Bach said.  

“I want to make sure that our comprehensive plan is well on its way to being implemented,” McClure said. 

McClure says some of the biggest issues to tackle are safety, quality, and economic vitality. 

Bach says those are similar to the ones she’d like to take on but would try a different approach. 

A lot of Springfieldians feel that those issues still have a long way to go and that we’ve been going in the wrong direction for most of his tenure.” Bach said.  

The forum was held by Paws at the Polls, a Missouri State-based group focused on voter turnout, working through a small turnout to the event.  

“There wasn’t as much turnout as we would have liked,” Zion Stevens said. “I think this is kind of reflective of turnout for municipal elections, which is why we’re doing this.” 

McClure says if elected, he’s unable to run again for Mayor after this election. 

“The last two years, we want to make sure let’s leave the city in as good a shape as we can,” McClure said.  

Bach, riding momentum after the Question 1 success says she’s looking to bring a fresh perspective to the office of the Mayor. 

“I have an opportunity to do something bigger and I’m going to go for it,” Bach said.  

The city council candidates who attended included Abe McCull, David Nokes, Bruce Adbib-Yazdi, Jeremy Dean and Brandon Jensen.   

Candidate Callie Carroll submitted answers read during the forum but was not present.