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Paul Love, incumbent Michael Trapp vying for Second Ward City Council seat

A former Columbia City Council candidate is vying for the Ward 2 city council seat once again.

Network engineer Paul Love is running against incumbent Michael Trapp. Love lost by just 83 votes in the last Second Ward election.

“I can offer you a desire for smaller government and integrity,” Love said.

“I have the experience and temperament to lead the city forward in a positive direction,” Trapp, who has served at the city council for six years, countered.

Love said he decided to run again because he felt Trapp wasn’t properly representing him. He cited Trapp’s vote in favor of the Broadway Hotel TIF, claiming Trapp’s vote was a conflict of interest because the Downtown Community Improvement District is paying Trapp’s company that helps fight homelessness.

“I don’t want him representing the interest of people who are paying him. To me, that’s a huge ethical conflict,” Love said.

“Because of the appearance of a conflict I have been abstaining from votes about the Community Improvement District,” Trapp said in response. “I’m disappointed that Paul Love has opened up the campaign with a baseless personal attack.”

The two candidates do agree on one issue: they are both in support of medical marijuana. Per Trapp’s request, the City Council recently reviewed a proposed ordinance that would issue support for legal access to cannabis for medical purposes.

“I don’t see any real issue with, under medical supervision, receiving marijuana to treat certain conditions,” Love said.

Love also told ABC 17 News that the Columbia Police Department needs better pay and more officers. Trapp said he agrees, but said Love had no real solution on how to achieve that.

“He’s had three years since he ran last time and he still doesn’t have any concrete ideas on how he’s going to add police officers,” Trapp said.

The Ward 6 City Council seat is also up for a vote, but no one filed with the city clerk’s office to run against incumbent Betsy Peters.

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