Michael Jordal — Austin City Council

Published 1:01 pm Sunday, November 6, 2016

Four candidates are in the home stretch for two seats on the Austin City Council. In the 1st Ward, incumbent Michael Jordal is seeking to hold off challenger Laura Helle. In the 3rd Ward, incumbent Jeremy Carolan is looking to hold off challenger Paul Fischer. Mayor Tom Stiehm and 2nd Ward Council member Steve King are also up for re-election, but both are unopposed.

Michael Jordal, 35, works as a graphic artist for Old 218. He and his wife, Kate, have a son, Griffin, and lost a daughter, Kimberly, who passed away shortly after birth.

Q: Why did you decide to run/rerun for Austin City Council?

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A: I really enjoy living in this community and am very invested in its success. The way tax dollars are spent is important to me and I decided that instead of just talking to other people about my ideas, I’d like to be a voice for conservative and wise spending of tax dollars on the council.



Q: Tell us about your past experience.

A: I grew up an hour southwest of Austin and spent many summers doing farm work. In high school I worked at a convenience store and while going through college I did work study as a janitor in a dorm, a tour guide for the school and was also an editor for the college paper. In the summers and school breaks I worked on the factory floor for Winnebago as well as a fork lift operator for 3-M and did security for Pinkertons. Since college I have been a graphic artist at Old 218/Robert’s Specialty company. I have volunteered as a mentor through Mower County, tutored GED candidates, and was a past member of Rotaract. I am also a member of the Community Education Advisory Council, the Cable TV Committee, and the Blazing Star Trail Joint Powers Board.

Q: What do you believe will make you a good board member?

A: I am very approachable and make an effort to listen to the voices of all of Austin’s citizens. Also, I feel that I am a strong person and not easily bullied into making decisions.

Q: Describe how you would approach and consider issues on the council?

A: It is very important to me to hear the feedback of the citizens when very large controversial projects are taking place and to make sure that their concerns are voiced.

Q: Describe your approach to discussing and weighing budget, funding and spending issues as they come up.

A: I feel it is critical to take every new item that comes before us and first decide it is a valid function of city government, then decide if we can afford it or not.

Q: What things do you think can be done to improve the city?

A: Overall I am very happy with Austin. I chose to live here because I like the size of the community and its location. I think Austin has been experiencing some growing pains, and the council needs to make sure we are scaling our public safety and infrastructure to match. I think it is important to take a measured approach to our growth so as not to outrun our ability to keep up.

Q: What other issues would you like to see addressed by the board and why?

A: I would like to see some sort of cost savings program implemented that would be similar to what many private sector companies use.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies?

A: I enjoy painting, reading and gathering with friends for games.

Q: What would we find you doing on a typical Friday night?

A: I generally spend my Friday evenings with my family or a group of friends.