Upper Arlington News

UA council race

Casper promises financial oversight, efficiency


A self-described community activist, Carolyn Casper said she would bring financial oversight and plans to reduce spending and increase revenues if she is elected to Upper Arlington City Council.

Casper, 69, is seeking her first term on council.

The 60-year Upper Arlington resident is among five candidates -- along with incumbents John Adams, David DeCapua and Debbie Johnson and fellow newcomer Kip Greenhill -- vying for four council seats in the Nov. 5 election.

DeCapua, Greenhill and Johnson will be profiled in the Oct. 10 edition of ThisWeek Upper Arlington News.

Casper, now retired, graduated from Ohio State University with a degree in social and behavioral sciences. She is the mother of three daughters.

She worked in the Ohio Auditor's Office, as well as the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, where she monitored state and local agencies' and individuals' compliance with state and federal regulations.

She said those experiences, as well as her involvement in numerous Upper Arlington community organizations and projects, have contributed to both her understanding of community issues and her commitment to her city.

"I have held community offices and currently serve on the Leadership UA board and the UA Alumni Association board," Casper said. "I have served on every PTO board throughout my children's time in the UA schools, from 1978 to 2003.

"I am a former chair of the First Community Church Mission Council, was president of Ohio Women twice, was one of four women who facilitated the redesign of the front of UA High School with no public dollars, worked on the new high school stadium and served on the National Women's Political Caucus steering committee."

In addition to her family's "60-year commitment" to Upper Arlington and its schools, Casper said her experience in public auditing, social services and as a legislative monitor would be a "unique" addition to council.

"I will work effectively with all council members to truly represent our citizens," she said. "With a new city manager, superintendent of schools and library director, we are poised to make changes that will carry us into the future. I will work with the UA City Council members to take good care of our city and its citizens."

Further, Casper said she would focus on helping the city find new revenue streams to replace the now-defunct Ohio estate tax and the state legislature's continued cuts to local government funding.

"Cut services and increase income," she said. "City staff cuts have already saved $1.5 million and reduced services.

"That is not enough to offset the loss of revenue in the coming years," she said. "Our 2015-16 budget will determine how we maintain our quality of life and update our services. The city survey is vital to guide the council's tough decisions. Listening to our residents to determine our priorities comes first. I am a listener."