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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — With early voting underway and Election Day right around the corner, we’ve been introducing your to the candidates for Wilmington City Council.

So far we’ve met the challengers in the race. Now the two incumbents.

Ronald Sparks says his background and experience makes him an ideal selection for voters.

Sparks has served on Wilmington City Council since 2007. He’s a native Wilmingtonian; born, raised and educated right here in the Cape Fear.

“I graduated from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington with a BS in physics, actually tripled majored in math, chemistry, and physics. Ended up with a bs in physics, minors in math and chemistry. I worked in this area my whole career,” Sparks said.

Sparks, an engineer, says he first ran for office because he was concerned with the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority. He says his core concerns for running the first time around are the same for this election.

“My campaign focus has always been housing, infrastructure and public safety,” he said.

Sparks says his experience as an incumbent has made him realize the challenges that come when one sticks up for an issue.

“When you are looking at a big budget like we have, infrastructure a lot of times gets pushed away from other things. No one really gets excited about a sewer line ribbon cutting, and for the last 60 years I don’t think the amount of attention has been placed on infrastructure,” Sparks said.

This election, though, has brought much attention to the topic of jobs. Many voters want to know what candidates plan to do to encourage job creation in the Port City. Sparks says it all comes back to infrastructure. He says companies look for well kept areas, not places that are dealing with sewer line or road issues. Sparks says small businesses have to be kept in mind as well.

“We want to make sure that we are helping the small businessman do his business and not putting stones in their way that prevents them from doing business,” he said.

As an incumbent Sparks has found himself the target for many newcomers to the political scene, who’s message revolves around change.

“I have found some of the rhetoric kind of not useful,” Sparks said. “This is a non-partisan election, and some folks want to bring partisan thinking into this election, and that’s not good. If you look at Washington, DC, which is completely partisan and the amount of gridlock they have there, we don’t want that kind of gridlock in Wilmington.”

Come Election Day Sparks is confident that voters will see past the talk of others and realize he is a great choice to once again serve on council

Our Wilmington City Council candidate profiles wrap up tomorrow with the other incumbent Laura Padgett.

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5 Comments on "Candidate profile: Ronald Sparks"

2015 years 9 months ago

You left out the lawsuit that the WHA filed against this incumbent over the apartment inspection. Don’t know where the suit is now…but as of May, an appeal to dismiss was tossed.

2015 years 9 months ago

so did Mr. Berenger and your other elected officails,

2015 years 9 months ago

“My campaign focus has always been housing, infrastructure and public safety,”

And this blast from his past:
“In 2005, Sparks inspected Eastbrook Apartments and recommended that the WHA purchase it. A short time later, complaints about mold and moisture from residents prompted the WHA to evacuate the apartments, which still sit empty today.”

So do we really want him to be able to spend our money when he couldn’t even do the job he was hired to do?

2015 years 9 months ago

We may end up with him, but he is far from a great choice. All he is, is a person that likes to hear himself talk. I would like to know how many organizations, clubs, etc. he belongs to and who foots the bill for the yearly dues. WWAY, please ask him that question. It would be safe to bet there are quite a few and doubt many of them are directly related to the city.

2015 years 9 months ago

It is time to completely clean house. Don’t re-elect anybody. All new blood and out with the old corrupt cronies.


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