Evans wants to finish ‘the job’ as mayor of Perrysburg


PERRYSBURG – Mayor Nelson Evans is not yet finished with the job he began four years ago.
The only mayoral candidate to file to run this year, Evans wants a second term to continue efforts to
improve communication within the city – a strategy that he believes will translate into better
efficiency in government operations, stronger relationships between the city and its residents and more
visible advertising for the town.
These ideas fit neatly within the three "C"s of his platform: connectivity, creativity and
Evans said that, as the economy places more restraints on local government budgets, it will become
increasingly important to listen to the community to learn what residents consider important and where
helpful changes can be made. Evans said the city may need to consider more privatization of its
services, for example. He pointed to police department staffing, an area where private citizens could be
hired to keep records or manage evidence room submissions – allowing officers to focus more on police
work and less on clerical duties.
"I think government’s going to have to change and look at things a little differently," he
Maintaining that kind of open dialogue with the public and meeting their concerns with politeness will do
much to solve problems, often before they occur, he said.
"It was something I kind of noticed in my law enforcement career that, most of the time, there’s
just a lot of misunderstanding on a lot of different issues," Evans said.
During his campaign in 2005, Evans ran on the platform of history with progress, service with growth, and
communication with action.
A major component of enhancing the city’s communication services was the redesign of its Web site. The
site now features a more modern layout and includes up-to-date information on services, news and
contacting city staff.
Under Evans’ administration, the city additionally instituted the Code Red phone alert system and made
the city budget process more accessible to the public.
The mayor pointed to downtown improvements of an example of where the city has grown while maintaining
its historical and small-town aesthetic. During this term, Evans said, many businesses took advantage of
monies offered through the city’s municipal development account to improve building facades. The city
has also hired more police officers and reorganized the zoning department to accommodate the
ever-growing demand for services.
Evans anticipates that issues surrounding unfunded federal mandates as well as city annexation policies
will remain pertinent during the next few years.
The federal requirements for maintaining compliance with water infrastructure regulations places a
significant burden on local government’s he said. At the moment, the city sewer system is its largest
debt-producing asset.
"It’s a concern because, if people want to build here in Perrysburg, it costs a little bit of money
to pay for our sewer lines and pay for expansion," he said. "So trying to keep that debt down
is a concern."
The mayor said he would like to work more with the water fund to tap into the full potential of the
city’s waterfront. Perrysburg’s water service contract with Toledo will not expire until 2027, but the
city is joining other Wood County communities in exploring options for potential water sources.
He said the city will continue to follow its annexation policy – developing in the area west of U.S. 75
as part of the 99-year agreement with Perrysburg Township. He said the city continues to work with the
township and participates in a mutual emergency aid program. But the neighboring communities are still
caught up in litigation involving jurisdiction of zoning enforcement when township residents use city
"I’ve been a little frustrated, but we continue to talk," he said.
Evans served as the police chief until 2003. During his 25-year law enforcement career with the city, he
was assigned to D.A.R.E. and Safety Town programming.
According to the city Web site, he also instituted the bike patrol, R.A.D. program, motorcycle patrol,
and Citizens Police Academy while serving as chief.
The mayor said he is pleased with his performance, as well as the city’s progress, during the last four
years. In that time, the city has been recognized as one of the best hometowns in the state by Ohio
Magazine and one of the top 10 towns for families by Family Circle Magazine.
"We’re getting a lot of recognition that I haven’t gone out and solicited," he said. "It’s
just, I think, because of the good government, good services, good schools – people are starting to
recognize the quality of our community, and I want to work on improving that even."

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