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Voters throughout southeast Iowa will go to the polls on November 7 to fill city council seats and elect mayors. There are contested races in some of the largest cities: Keokuk, Fort Madison, and Burlington.Tri States Public Radio talked to the candidates in these cities about their campaigns and put together an online audio election guide. Hear what the candidates have to say and become informed before you vote.

Election 2017 - Keokuk City Council - 1st Ward - Dianne Stanley

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Dianne Stanley is running for the Ward 1 seat on the Keokuk City Council.

There are two people running for the Ward 1 seat on the Keokuk City Council: Incumbent Mike O'Connor and Dianne Stanley. Stanley said Keokuk was a welcoming town when she lived there growing up and since she returned about ten years ago, so she said serving on the city council is a way to give back to the city.

**NOTE - Stanley spoke to Tri States Public Radio prior to the most recent vote by the Keokuk City Council to tear down the former Unitarian Church.**

Stanley said she brings a wide range of experience to the race having owned a small business and worked for a major corporation over the years. She currently manages the Grand Theatre in Keokuk and is a former president of the local American Association of University Women.

Stanley said the biggest challenge facing the city is its infrastructure needs, in particular better streets, at a time when it must spend millions to separate its sewer system. She said improving the appearance of the city -- including streets -- could boost pride in the city.

Stanley said if elected, she would push for the opening of a dog park and for the city to continue to demolish vacant, run down buildings. She said she prefers a nice green space to a dilapidated structure. She said she would also work to have the train cars in front of the riverfront depot relocated and she's worried that the new entertainment barge could harm Main Street businesses if the city is not careful in its planning.

Early voting is underway in Keokuk ahead of the November 7 general election.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.