PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — The Bay County Chamber of Commerce is giving citizens a closer look at this year’s municipal election candidates.

The chamber sent out a survey to candidates with a list of questions the public might be interested in.

Candidates had the opportunity to answer more than a dozen questions about everything from affordable housing to education.

This is the first time the Chamber has conducted one of these surveys in the hopes of helping voters learn more about the candidates’ platforms all in one place.

When asked why he is running for office, Lynn Haven Mayor Jesse Nelson said he wants to “…continue serving the Lynn Haven community as we restore integrity and progressively improve our quality of life to be the Bay’s Best City.”

His opponent, Judy Tinder, said she is running because she wants to “…ensure the residents of Lynn Haven THE TRUTH, transparency and honest leadership that realizes our commission serves the residents and we must use THEIR tax dollars, as if they were OUR OWN…”

“We thought it was important to develop specific questions for the candidates to respond to,” Bay County Chamber of Commerce President Carol Roberts said. “So often, citizens don’t have that opportunity to have one-on-one conversations and we thought it was a great way to get them to address specific issues, especially of importance to the chamber and the business community.”

In response to a question about traffic, Lynn Haven Commission Seat 4 candidate Ellyne Fields said, “We have severe traffic problems. One of the biggest issues in our city is everyone saying yes to build, build, build. Then, when the focus is off of the project that caused the traffic issue, another project starts across town. This is the balance I spoke of before in my top priorities for the city.”

Sitting Seat 4 Commissioner Judy Vandergrift said, “With growth comes traffic! Local and State government should work together with the traffic engineers to plan ahead for future growth. Be proactive in this situation instead of reacting to the problems. Local governments need to be lobbying now!”

“We were very pleased at the response that we received from the candidates,” Roberts said. “I think it was a great opportunity for them to kind of tell their story and where they stand on the issues.”

Click here for a full list of the responses to the survey.