Cottonwood County District 1 candidates state their positions

Posted August 8, 2018 at 6:45 pm

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Jim Schmidt.jpg

Responses printed in this story are reproduced just at they were submitted to the Sentinel Tribune. Ed.

Jim Schmidt, Westbrook

What motivated you to run for Cottonwood County’s 2018 District 1 county commissioner?

Running for Commissioner has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with serving the public. That started 30 plus years ago when I was first elected to the Westbrook School Board. You must realize that you represent Dist. #1, but serve all residents of Cottonwood Cty. Serving you the public is my motivation.

What qualified you to be a county commissioner?

My qualifications are as follows:

Currently, I am in my 8th year as Dist. #1 Commissioner and up for Board Chair 2019,

I am on the Board of Directors of Southwest Mental Health,

Red Rock Rural Water, Westbrook Light and Power, Member of the Missouri Valley Electric, U of M Extension 4H, Des Moines Valley Health and Human Services,

WWG Education Foundation, and 9 out of the last 10 years awarded Ford Employee Excellence (E 2) Sales and Service. I have dealt with a multitude of personalities over the last 30 plus years in the auto industries.

Former boards and activities, 19 years Westbrook/WWG School Board Member, 21 years Westbrook Volunteer Fireman, 18 years Southwest/West Central ECSU Board of Directors, 17 years Appletree Institute Board of Directors, 40 plus

years of volunteer groups starting with JC’s to WAV, Big Brother Program,

Instrumental in the founding of WWG BOLT and Prairie Smoke BBQ sauce program

also Sparsity Revenue that has saved WWG well over 5 million in tax dollars over the last 20 years.

What will be your top priority as a commissioner after the November election?

Number one is to continue to serve Dist #1 and all of Cottonwood Counties citizens.

The erosion of our 90 year old County Tile system is a real big issue.

Constant upgrading on our County road system, hard service and gravel

County Buildings

Finally, locking down a start date for the replacement of Main Street in WB 2020

Rehabilitation of our one of a kind in the State of MN Cty Courthouse. Currently working on a $260,000 grant for a total 99 window replacement. Just finished painting 4 domes.

3 potential electric generating windmill farms that could bring in well over a million dollars in tax revenue for the county and townships to share. That could possibly bring 8-12 new jobs to Dist 1.

Jon Johnson

Significant other: Brandie Swenson

Children: stepdaughter Taylor Swenson

Occupation: Inventory Control at Prime Pork

What motivated you to run for Cottonwood County’s 2018 District 1 County Commissioner?

A new set of eyes and ears for the people of Cottonwood County. A different perspective on the concerns of citizens

What qualifies you to be a county commissioner?

I have served on City Council in Storden. I have also served on church council and I am a member of the Storden Town Day Committee. Budgeting and working with a variety of people are strengths I possess.

What will be. Your top priority as a commissioner after the November election?

To hold people accountable for their actions. To be sure the top priorities are being met. To ask good solid questions, so that I am properly informed of concerns of our great citizens of Cottonwood County.

Larry Anderson

Spouse: Carrie Anderson

Children: Jeremy, daughter-in-law Heidi; granddaughters Calle, Bailey

Occupation: Habilitative Services, Inc. for the past 25 years

1. What motivated you to run for Cottonwood County Commissioner?

I have thought about running for commissioner for several years. I will be retiring in the near future which will allow me to have the time to be available to serve in this position. I have a strong desire to see my community prosper and have worked tirelessly in many community organizations during my lifetime. I have served on the Westbrook Township Board for over 30 years, most of them as the chairman, so I feel I have the perspective and the experience that would be beneficial to the residents of Cottonwood County. I strongly believe an elected official must be honest, open, approachable, and fiscally responsible.

2. What qualifies you be a county commissioner?

I have over 30 years of experience in local government as supervisor and chairman of the

Westbrook Township Board. In those 30 years, I have been involved with road and bridge issues, culverts” disaster funding with FEMA, purchasing and maintaining equipment, personnel matters, creating budgets to set annual levies” reviewing taxation issues when requested, right of way issues, and election judge. I have served 2 terms on the Cottonwood County Township

Association and I represent Cottonwood County townships as a commissioner on the Southwest Regional Development Commission. As a property and fleet manager with Habilitative Services” Inc. for the last 25 years” I have been involved with purchasing properties and vehicles, project manager on building and remodeling, budgeting, estimating, training staff, and personnel matters. Part of my job included working with various regulatory agencies including the MN Dept. of Health Engineering, boiler inspectors, Elevator inspectors, electrical inspectors, health care division of fire marshals, ADA (handicap accessibility) .. and building inspectors. As project manager on remodels and new builds, I was tasked with estimating and creating a budget, receiving quotes, interviewing contractors, making recommendations to the owner and board, and communicating with all contractors and sub-contractors to maintain the project budget and timeline.

3. What will be your top priority as a commissioner after the November election?

The first thing that comes to mind would be continued maintenance and repair on county infrastructure (specifically roads and bridges). An additional priority would be to ensure proper assessment and funding to repair and maintain the aging county tile and ditch system. And finally, and most importantly would be to ensure proper due diligence in all financial matters.

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