Lehi City Offices located in the downtown area off 100 W. | Nicole Kunze

14 Lehi residents have declared candidacy for three seats on the Lehi City Council. The primary election to narrow the field to six candidates will be held on Tuesday, August 13, and a meet the candidate night will be held at the Legacy Center on Tuesday, August 6.

The general election will be held on Tuesday, November 5, 2019. As a result of the primary election, eight candidates will be eliminated. The winning candidates will become three of the five-member legislative body to serve Lehi residents from January 2020 through December 2023.

All three incumbent City Council members (whose terms end on December 31), Paige Albrecht, Johnny Revill, and Mike Southwick have chosen to seek reelection. Albrecht, the only woman currently on the City Council, has indicated she will seek a second term, but no more beyond that. Southwick is finishing his second four-year term. Revill has been a member of the City Council for 15.5 years, currently finishing his fourth term. The Lehi Free Press asked each of the candidates four questions with maximum 100-word answers. Listed alphabetically, each candidates’ responses are below.

Some candidates chose not to answer all questions. Responses may have been edited for clarity and brevity. Candidates are listed in alphabetical order.

Paige Albrecht (incumbent)

Paige Albrecht

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? Lehi needs leaders with a proven ability to represent all citizens wisely and well. I prepared to hold office by serving for three years on the Lehi City Planning Commission while attending nearly all City Council meetings, and I’ve volunteered on many committees throughout Lehi for more than a decade—long before I was elected. Our explosive growth calls for Councilmembers who are completely ready to hit the ground running and effectively represent all of Lehi, not just one issue or area. We must protect our past and plan wisely for our future. I pledge to do so as Lehi’s Councilwoman for the next four years.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Public safety is a top issue. Given the current shortage of police officers, it’s crucial to provide the right compensation and facilities to train and retain our officers and firefighters. Next, we may have a housing shortage, but we should be very cautious about locations for higher density, particularly transit-oriented developments. We must also plan infrastructure more effectively, especially roads, which will be vital to alleviating Lehi’s difficult traffic issues.

We need better protection and preservation in the historical areas of Lehi. And we need to acquire and develop more open space for parks and trail systems before it’s all gone—without raising taxes. 

How long have you lived in Lehi? I’ve lived in Lehi nearly 17 years. My family moved to Lehi in October 2002, when the population was just 22,000 people. It’s tripled since then!

Tell us a little more about yourself. As an army brat, I grew up all over the country and never had lasting roots. But we wanted our three sons to be blessed with a wonderful hometown, so we hand-picked Lehi to settle in after graduating from BYU. I was a stay-at-home PTA mom for many years, and now I teach Special Education for severely disabled kids. My interests include my kids, my dog Checkers, local government, traveling, reading newspapers, musical theater, and education.

Cody Black

Cody Black

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? I am a true entrepreneur and have owned several businesses throughout the state. I currently own and operate two businesses in Lehi – Checker Flag, since 2001, and Auto 1 Tires, which is a new startup, since January 2019. I am also a police officer for the city of Saratoga Springs.

How long have you lived in Lehi? I grew up in Lehi and graduated from Lehi High School in 2000. I married Anna Black in 2001 and we have two sons.

Tell us a little more about yourself? I enjoy coaching kids in super league baseball. I think it’s a great thing to get involved in public office if you have the time and energy. I’ll bring a new face and new energy to the Lehi City Council.

Ammon Crossette

Ammon Crossette

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? Lehi became my home in 2011. Over the years I’ve watched Lehi grow, and it has grown on me. It is my home and will be for the foreseeable future. I believe it is the responsibility of honest citizens to be involved in their local government. Serving Lehi would be an honor for me, as well as an invaluable life experience.

 Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Outside looking on, Lehi has two conflicting identities: Silicon Slopes and Lehi, a rodeo-friendly, family town. People know about the Silicon Slopes of Utah, not Lehi. Locally, people hear there are a lot of businesses coming in, but there’s little buzz when planning a weekend or night out.

People move here for the jobs and industries building here, but on weekends they are spending their money elsewhere. How do we entertain the revenue locally that Lehi creates? What does Lehi offer career-minded young, energetic, entrepreneurs being drawn here, that will keep them here and make Lehi their home?

How long have you lived in Lehi? I moved to Lehi in 2011 and have been here ever since, except for one year in Mapleton.

Tell us a little about yourself. My wife and I will be celebrating our 1-year anniversary this June and are excited about the prospect of buying the house that has been our home for the past four years. We love Lehi and are looking forward to whatever the future brings.

Montane Hamilton

Montane Hamilton and family

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? I’m running as I believe a different approach to handling the city’s issues is needed. The city has an important role in ensuring every landowner and tenant is free to plan for the future use of their land based on current zoning, rules, and regulations. Preference should be to leave the rules the way they are but if the zoning, rules or regulations need to change in a way that forces existing landowners and tenants to change their plans, the city must show how those changes are creating value to entire neighborhoods, the city or even the state.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? One of the most important issues for Lehi is ensuring that as a governing body it stays out of landowner’s and tenant’s lives as much as possible. The city should play the role of arbiter between the landowners and tenants of Lehi. The city shouldn’t be there to pick a winner or loser but instead is there to ensure the city wins. The city wins when the resolution of conflicts around land use leads to the creation of value for an entire neighborhood, the city or the state, and thus make Lehi a more attractive place to live and work. 

How long have you lived in Lehi? Since 2012, so seven years.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I’m an independent thinking software developer raising two boys with my wife in Lehi. I’ve been involved with HOAs as a board member, serving as President for our last HOA for seven years. Like city government, being involved is the best way to ensure that they [HOAs] are run fairly. I did not seem to get the memo that life is not fair and try my best to ensure I’m fair to the people around me.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I’m an independent thinking software developer raising two boys with my wife in Lehi. I’ve been involved with HOAs as a board member, serving as President for our last HOA for seven years. Like city government, being involved is the best way to ensure that they [HOAs] are run fairly. I did not seem to get the memo that life is not fair and try my best to ensure I’m fair to the people around me.

Tahnee Hamilton

Tahnee Hamilton

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? I am running for Lehi City Council to represent and to unite the citizens of Lehi. I want to promote the growth and development in the City, but not at the expense of its citizens. I see significant challenges facing our City, such as development and infrastructure, and I want to invoke a positive change for our generation and future generations. My background as an attorney equips me with the skills to ask the right questions and to sift through the research to find the answers. I feel confident that I can represent the interests of Lehi citizens, and I need your vote.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Maintaining the community feel of the City, while dealing with exploding population growth is the biggest challenge for Lehi’s future. This necessarily affects infrastructure, air quality, and a balance of community and development.  Infrastructure needs to be built prior to development approval. Air quality needs to be determined prior to mining. Peck Park and the community areas need to be built.     

How long have you lived in Lehi? Almost 6 years.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I have been a practicing attorney for 11 years, specializing in business and real estate litigation, and family law. My husband and I own a small business in Lehi, and I have personally dealt with the residential issues and commercial frustrations over the past few years. I am dedicated, hard-working, and think “outside the box.”  I have a supportive husband, four children, and two dogs. I will push for positive change in Lehi, and I need your vote.

Matthew Wynn Hemmert

Matthew Wynn Hemmert

Why are you running for City Council? I’ve served on the Lehi Planning Commission for just over five years. I’ve seen how many of the gears of municipal government work. But, as a commissioner, I have a limited ability to a) have meaningful one-on-one interaction with the public and applicants, and b) strongly opine on issues that implicate the commission. As a City Council member, I can take what I’ve learned over my commission tenure and hit the ground running to engage on a deeper level. I love this city, and I want to serve it in a way that allows me to better utilize my experience and skills.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Most of our current and future issues are lateral to growth and development. I must go there. The most important issue for me is to accelerate alternative transportation adoption for residents and the non-resident workers we welcome to our city. I know much of it is out of the hands of the city (e.g. TRAX), and we’ve done great work with our Transit Oriented Development zones. But we can do more related to finding ways to incent demand for, and use of, alternative transportation, walkable mixed-use development, etc., to reduce vehicular traffic, positively affect air quality, and honor our legacy.

How long have you lived in Lehi? My wife and I have lived in Lehi for nearly twelve years.

Tell us a little about yourself. My wife, Julie, and I are the proud and blessed parents of four children ranging in age from five to twelve years old. I grew up in Orem and fully understand the hollow feeling of seeing agriculture land go away. I’ve been a practicing attorney since 2006, and currently direct the legal affairs of a software company. Outside of work and family, I enjoy cooking, gardening, traveling, writing, family history, and cycling.

Henry Rudolph Kneitz III

Henry Rudolph Kneitz III

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? I would like to help maintain the “down home” look and feel of this town, which is why people love it here. At the same time, being involved in technology as I am, smart devices and so forth, I want the area to continue its growth. Recently it was rated sixth in the nation for growth. I want to make sure that everyone in Lehi has informed access to emergency services. Our Post office is also handling mail for three growing cities. We need to urge the acceleration of the building of a new Post Office in one of those cities.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Maintaining the quality of life here. The friendliness, support, and growth without losing ourselves to growth. We do not want to be excessively commercialized and yet we also do not want to excessively restrict growth. The post office, for example, is extremely busy as it is handling Eagle Mountain and Saratoga Springs as well as Lehi. We need to encourage and support the building of a new facility in one of those other cities.

How long have you lived in Lehi? When looking for a permanent home here in Utah one of the places we drove through was Lehi. This city reminded me of a town just north of Elgin, IL where I raised my two children. Both towns have large rivers flowing through them. They both flood periodically. Both towns also have very nice old-fashioned Main Streets. After months of searching, we were fortunate to find an awesome home in an awesome neighborhood here in Lehi. We used my VA Loan and bought a home in August of 2018 so that would be nearly 10 months. We formerly lived in Draper for a year.

Tell us a little more about yourself. A follower of Christ 50+ years. The eldest of four. Two adult children. My son was stationed at Hill Air force Base. My daughter lives and works in the Chicago area. Married, 7+ years. My wife has a position with the Post Office here in Lehi. Moved here when my company (Amazon) needed a rep in Utah. Closely following politics for 45+ years. Ran for US House, 3rd district in 2018 here in Utah. Illinois National Guard for 6 years. I have a desire to support and encourage people.

Katie Koivisto

Katie Koivisto

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? As I have had the opportunity to raise my family in Lehi and experience the fast-paced growth, I have a lot of concerns about what takes priority regarding the way policies are being implemented and executed. When I have attended city council meetings, often, I have felt frustrated and defeated. Because of this, I have realized that for my voice to be heard I would need to participate in the political arena.  

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? I feel strongly that there is a disconnect regarding communication between the City of Lehi and its residents. As Lehi works hard to improve its community, it occasionally disregards the opinions and voices of its citizens. One major issue right now is traffic. The City did a terrific job listening to a 15-year-old boy, Skyler Chapman, who suggested a simple yet effective plan to help alleviate the congestion just north of 2300 West. We need to continue to listen to voices like Skyler. I am not afraid to speak my mind or ask tough questions that help unite each resident’s voice.

How long have you lived in Lehi? My family and I have had the privilege of residing in Lehi for the past five years. We are in debt to the amazing people in the Pointe Meadows Neighborhood and now have the opportunity to grow with the community of Holbrook Farms.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I am a wife and mother of three. For two years, I had the pleasure of volunteering as the HOA president for the Pointe Meadows Townhomes. I have also worked as an independent marketing consultant, helping small local businesses increase their visibility. About nine months ago, I stepped down from consulting work and currently volunteer my time as the Relief Society President for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for the Holbrook Farms 1st Ward.

Michelle Miles

Michelle Miles

Declined Participation












Jason Oviatt

Jason Oviatt

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? I am excited for the opportunity run for City Council. I believe that as a city we should be embracing the future while building on the success of the past.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? I feel that we should be growing our community as fast as our city is growing. Meaning we should be developing programs and facilities to be used by families and the youth, as much as we are building homes and businesses.

How long have you lived in Lehi? I have enjoyed the last 18 years I have lived in Lehi.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I have had the opportunity to coach in the youth leagues for the last 19 years and have had the opportunity to coach both football and baseball at the High School. I love this community and I love serving it. I look forward to helping us move into the future with a sense of pride and excitement.

Johnny Revill (incumbent)

Johnny Revill

Why are you running for Lehi City Council?  I ran into a friend at Kohler’s who thanked me for the years of service I had given as a councilman over the past 15 years. He then encouraged me to run again. I asked why I should try for a fifth term and he responded, “We trust you to make good, solid, reasonable decisions for us, the citizens, when we are too busy with life to go to all of the meetings.” In the 2019 resident survey, 84% felt the same way as they answered that they approve of the way the mayor and city council have handled their jobs.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Obviously, most of the issues that face Lehi are those of growth management and development. In fact in our 2019 citizen survey, while 79% of those surveyed thought Lehi was growing too quickly, when asked if Lehi was better or worse than it was 5 years ago, 25% said they hadn’t lived here that long and 54% of those surveyed said that Lehi was better now than 5 years ago. Other than those issues, water, traffic, property rights, public safety and especially respect for each other are the issues I feel are of most importance.

How long have you lived in Lehi? My family moved to Lehi in 1975 when I was two years old. I was raised here, and my wife and I are raising our five children here as well. Besides serving an LDS mission in Spain and living away for a few years in our early marriage, I’ve lived in Lehi my whole life.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I love representing Lehi and Lehi residents. I work very hard at listening, understanding and validating every concern that I hear from residents, business owners, developers, etc. One thing I’ve learned from my service in the council is no matter what, you can’t make everyone happy, but when people know that you do value their input and opinions, most are able to understand and respect decisions made even when we don’t agree on a certain issue.

Mike Southwick (incumbent)

Mike Southwick

Why are you running for City Council? I am running again for City Council because I have loved working with city officials, the mayor and other council members on behalf of the citizens of Lehi. The traditions of the city are important to me and I want to continue to see these traditions carry on as well as seek to make improvements. I love serving and striving to do what I can to make a difference for all of us.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future?  There are a lot of important issues that face Lehi and a couple of them are affordable housing and providing enough recreation facilities for our youth.

We need to continue to provide housing opportunities that allow all income levels to be able to afford to live in Lehi. One way that has helped is allowing accessory apartments in homes. We need to continue to come up with other ways of affordable housing. 

As a city and community, we need to provide funding alternatives to get more recreational facilities built to accommodate the needs of our youth. 

Tell us a little about yourself. I have lived in Lehi 65 years and have enjoyed raising my family here. My wife, Beckie, and I have six sons who have all married beautiful daughters-in-law and provided us with nineteen grandchildren. 

I have worked in Lehi and surrounding cities as an electrical contractor and am now selling electrical equipment for Royal Wholesale Electric, which is also located in Lehi. I have served on the City Council for two terms. I am truly grateful for the opportunities to work and serve in a city I admire and love.

Steven Werner

Steven Werner

Why are you running for Lehi City Council? To do everything I can to put the brakes on runaway development, especially high-density housing.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? Development concerns are really the only reason I’m running. I believe this is the number one concern of Lehi citizens.

How long have you lived in Lehi? One year.

Tell us a little more about yourself. I was raised in SLC, but I’ve spent most of my adult life in Phoenix and Seattle. I was in Seattle during a massive population explosion related to a large expansion of the tech industry (I work in tech). I watched runaway development turn a beautiful city into something people are now fleeing. The same patterns are playing out here in Utah, and I want to do everything I can to stop it.

Jonathan Willis

Jonathan Willis

Why are you running for Lehi City Council?  I love Lehi and I love the state of Utah. I have been concerned, however, with the direction things are going at the federal and state levels, and in some cases, the city level. Local politics can impact us just as much or more than the higher levels of government and it can be frustrating sitting back watching things happen. Instead of sitting back and watching, I finally decided to get off my seat and run for office to try and change things for the better.

Other than management of growth and development, in your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Lehi’s future? The most pressing issues for Lehi besides urban growth and planning are: 1) keep city government transparent and reduce regulations, and 2) keep Lehi attractive to businesses to come to the city to help continue growth. 

How long have you lived in Lehi? I have lived in Lehi for one year and have worked here for four years.

Tell us a little more about yourself.  I am originally from Sacramento, California. I have been married for six years and have four children. I am a software developer currently working at Canopy Tax at the point of the mountain. I love freedom and want everyone to enjoy the freedoms our nation provides.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks to all who put so much effort into producing this information. The individuals who took the time to inform others about themselves and the staff at the Lehi Free Press who did the work editing and publishing this information. I know that it is a lot of work.

  2. Thanks for taking the time to do some research on the candidates and make it available to us. I’m sure the candidates appreciate the opportunity to get their name and what they care about out there as well.

  3. Really glad to see Jonathan Willis in the race. I have known him personally for years, and I know he will do a great job on city council.

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