James Tesauro

SHEBOYGAN — The February primary is coming up on Feb. 16 in the City of Sheboygan. One of the biggest races on the ballot is the seat for the city's mayor.

We set down with candidate James Tesauro to discuss why he wanted to throw his hat in the ring, what he thinks the biggest issues facing Sheboygan are and learn more about him.

See the full Zoom interview here:

Highlights from the interview:

On his reasoning for running: "The race for mayor came up, and I have some folks in the community that went 'Hey, you know what, I think you'd be a good candidate for this,' and we sat down and we really talked about it, and I decided to run. If it pans out, great. I hope I can help the town to the best of my ability. If it doesn't, my plan is we are like I said, and I want to be active in the community and build my business to potentially open a storefront from those as well."

On COVID-19 and small businesses: "I've made it a point to support small businesses throughout the pandemic. I've spoken to a lot of people that run establishments in town, some of them I've become close friends with, and they're struggling. They're looking for a responsible way to get back to normal, and I think that we have to work to get back to normal. I've been saying this for a while, I liked it when I heard it, and I stand by it—the cure can't be worse than the problem." ... "A lot of business owners, we're all responsible adults. Nobody here wants to hurt anybody, and I think that point really needs to be driven home. There's not a person on either end or in the middle of the political spectrum that wants anything bad to happen to anybody. I can tell you from a personal standpoint, my grandmother, my last living grandparent, passed away two weeks before Christmas from COVID. It's a personal touch into my life ... It does hit me in the heart. Obviously, we have to be responsible, but we also have to be able to remain open in a responsible way, and I think that's where I make a connection with the business owners."

On the biggest issues facing Sheboygan: 

"There's a couple issues that are near and dear to my heart. Everybody is talking about road repair, and I think that's very important. There's a tire tax that we pay and that money is supposed to be used for infrastructure and for repairing roads. There are roads that are in very good condition, they just happen to be the roads leaving to the crux of the commerce of town."

"Something that's important to me, having a 15-month-old daughter, I've attended some events, spoken to some folks that run organizations around this area for the human trafficking issue that we have around this area. It is very real. I know some people have labeled me a conspiracy theorist over that, but I can tell you that based on the stats I've been told, the youngest was two years old last year and the oldest was 78 ... That needs to stop, especially in a beautiful area like this."

Stay tuned to our website and Facebook for additional candidate profiles in the coming week.

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