Archived Story

Kidwell ready for challenge

Published 4:51pm Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Jim Kidwell’s Niles Township supervisor re-election bid definitely got more interesting when former Niles Township Treasurer Jim Stover announced his candidacy for the post last month. The two will face off in the August Republican primary.

What makes the race interesting is the history between Kidwell and Stover.

Kidwell, a police officer for the city of Niles for more than 20 years, arrested Stover for driving under the influence in 1995. Stover was serving as Niles Township treasurer at the time.

“We had a parting of ways after that,” Kidwell said. “It took me by surprise that he’s coming back for the supervisor’s job.”

Stover ran for the 78th District state House seat in 1996 but lost to Ron Jelinek. He then left Niles Township in 1996 to take the treasurer job at Pl


ainfield Township in Kent County, a position he held until February when he resigned in order to pursue Kidwell’s post.

“It was quite public at the time,” Stover said about the DUI. “I have that skeleton in my closet. There’s nothing I can do about it today.”

Stover said he could have pleaded down to driving while visually impaired but chose not to because he wanted to “be honest with the people who are going to vote for me.”

Kidwell also pointed out Stover is a friend of Township Treasurer Jim Ringler — one of Kidwell’s biggest opponents on the


township board.

“I just think it’s another move that shows the good ole boys down there want me to go away. Mr. Stover was their best answer for that,” Kidwell said.

In an interview last week, Stover said he doesn’t have any “ties or debts to anyone” in Niles Township and is seeking the post on his own accord.

Kidwell said he wants to focus on his first-term accomplishments during the campaign, pointing to the demolition of the old Eastgate Shopping Plaza, a community eyesore for decades. He also said he is proud of the sidewalk improvement project and his perfect meeting attendance record.

“I am the only one on the board that can say that I haven’t missed a meeting,” Kidwell said.

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  • Mark

    I don’t know Jim well, but would like to thank him for all that he has done. It is hard to be the honest one in a sea of dishonesty. I appreciate what he has done for the Township and for putting up with the ugliness that has come due to the dishonesty of others. I think it is sad that the others try to put all of the negativity on him. It is seen far too often in politics, when the honest one comes in and exposes the wrong doings of others, for some strange reason the blame for the waves gets placed on the honest one.

    I plead for the constituents of the Township to become aware of what is really going on. Please look at each individual and assign them with the appropriate good deeds and then the misappropriate ones. I think that you will find that the only misappropriate deed that Jim Kidwell has done over the last four years has been to be too honest. He has dug to deep, tried to be too transparent.

    Because I choose not to divulge my last name people have called me a thug and a bully. I ask for anyone who reads to simply get the facts. They are available. Please be an educated voter. Our Township NEEDS people like Mr. Kidwell!!

  • Phil

    Hey Mark, let me help you with your last name; it’s either Kidwell, some relation to Kidwell or a Kidwell Kool-Aid drinker… Yes, he’s so honest that he forgot to apply for building permits when he built his cottage or chalet back in the woods on his property. You know, the one that his building official helped him build. So honest that he built it in a State-designated wetland without those permits, either. He’s so honest that he hasn’t paid any property taxes on it for the last 10 years, while the rest of us taxpayers paid on ours. That’s what I call being transparent and too honest. I hope everyone stops calling you a bully and a thug. Those two words are too good for you. The words you to used to describe Mr. Kidwell, however? Well, those are just a joke!

  • level1

    Jim Kidwell’s reign as Supervisor has been in my opinion nothing but a colossal failure. To take credit for Eastgate and the sidewalks is nothing more than taking credit for the actions of others. Previous Board members worked on both of those projects long before Mr. Kidwell came along. If it wasn’t for a true community minded person stepping forward with the funds to purchase Eastgate I feel Jim Kidwell would have torn it down on the backs of the Township taxpayers. Thank you Mr. (you know who you are) for stepping forward and saving us taxpayers. I truly do hope your investment pays you back well. The damage Mr. Kidwell has done to the Township and to certain individuals is disgraceful. Two lawsuits aimed at destroying others that he feels are in his way of his “police state” personal agenda is enough to send him riding into the sunset forever as Supervisor. The best thing voters can do is the same thing Donald Trump would do to his slack apprentices……fire him!…………. I’ll support Mr. Stover.

  •!/kbtonkin Kevin Tonkin

    The accomplishments for the past three and one half years are nothing to brag about. Try 18 years of missing only one meeting, build a new fire station and ambulance addition and saving it financially, park and road improvements and more. Don’t believe those? FOIA that like you are so good at! All that has been done in our township is legal battles against people who truly serve our township. You are not a bully and a thug Mark or Golfer 57 because you don’t use your name. What you are is a bully and a thug and uncreditable because creditability comes with putting your name and comments out front for people like you to smear with lies. We WILL take our township back!

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