Candidates operating for races in Raleigh County experienced a prospect to plead their instances to voters all through a Meet up with the Candidates celebration hosted by the Beckley-Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce at Tamarack on Thursday.
Three of the four county races are expected to be resolved in the May well 10 Most important Election: the race for Raleigh County Board of Education and learning, which is a nonpartisan race as properly as the race for Raleigh County commissioner, which has only Republican candidates and the race for Raleigh County clerk, which has just one prospect.
Also on the ballot is the Raleigh County circuit clerk seat, which has one Republican applicant and just one Democratic candidate, this means they will not compete until finally the standard election in November.
Throughout Thursday’s Meet the Candidate occasion, candidates jogging for commission and circuit clerk ended up asked issues from a media panel.
The main issues for these candidates had been work and attracting a lot more persons to Raleigh County as very well as encouraging individuals right here to stay.
Candidates for the board of instruction had been also presented time to discuss but were asked no inquiries.
Raleigh County Fee
The four Republicans who have filed to run for Raleigh County Commission are incumbent Dave Tolliver, Daniel Hall, Robert Mooney and Lucy Lester.
All but Mooney, a resident of Crab Orchard, was present at Thursday’s applicant event.
The very first fee candidate to communicate was Hall, who recognized himself as a Raleigh County smaller company proprietor with 8 a long time of practical experience performing in the West Virginia legislature.
Hall reported he preferred to label himself as the “pro-business candidate.” If elected, Hall reported his target will be on economic enhancement and bringing small business to the county.
Corridor was asked by the media panel about what he would do to boost the business weather in Raleigh County and what can be carried out to reverse the inhabitants decline struggling with the county.
Hall stated the fee must oppose rules or charges that raise the money stress on companies and emphasis on acquiring extra web pages all set for economic growth.
Corridor included the TIF district proposed together Harper Highway requires to be accredited and would be if he were being elected.
He reported the county should also lean into its Parks and Rec Section to help far better market the county and improve its broadband to entice more remote personnel.
Lester explained she works as an grownup educator and believes the opioid epidemic remains the most significant challenge dealing with Raleigh County.
“I do not believe we can get organizations to transfer in in this article until finally we deal with our amount just one dilemma,” she said. “…I have owned a business enterprise and we do will need to lower taxes and all that, but we first want to deal with the difficulties that are in this article at hand and that are emergency.”
Lester stated she thinks the drug epidemic continues to be an concern for the reason that it has not been dealt with the right way. She went on to say that folks who commit crimes should really be punished. She reported she believes penalties for drug-relevant crimes are turning out to be softer and she is also not a supporter of dwelling confinement.
On a lighter note, Lester reported the county should really commit additional in its more youthful technology and concentration much more on its positives instead of its negatives.
The last fee prospect to converse was Tolliver.
Tolliver mentioned that when he was 1st elected in 2010, he made three promises – to be a very good steward of taxpayer money, to deliver in employment and to function on water and sewer assignments. Tolliver said he has held all of these claims.
With the enable of the New River Gorge Regional Progress Authority, Tolliver explained he has aided aid the development of hundreds of employment at the Raleigh County Memorial Airport. He extra that the county is also engaged in eight sewer projects, five drinking water projects and 3 broadband jobs.
To pursue these initiatives devoid of burdening Raleigh County inhabitants, as a commissioner, Tolliver mentioned he often goes immediately after grant funding.
“We’re trying to maintain the infrastructure shifting with all the government funds that’s out there floating all-around,” he mentioned.
Raleigh County Board of Training
Five of the six candidates functioning for three seats in the nonpartisan Raleigh County Board of Instruction race built an overall look at the applicant discussion board.
These candidates ended up the only kinds not questioned a concern by the media panel and have been alternatively specified 90 seconds to communicate.
Incumbent Larry Ford of District 3 spoke about his 45 years of operating in Raleigh County, 16 yrs on the board of schooling and his involvement in a selection of local boards and companies.
“I’ve always tried out to remain associated in our community,” said Ford, who is the president of the RCBOE. “I assume it can make it improved for every person who lives here. Now I want to keep on on the Raleigh County Board of Instruction, supporting our directors, our pupils, our school service staff.”
Another incumbent running is Marie Walker Hamrick, also of District 3. Hamrick, a former trainer and advice counselor, reported voters ought to retain in intellect that when they categorical adjustments they’d like to see in the local university techniques that there is only so considerably a faculty board member can do.
“The most regulated college system in the nation is West Virginia,” she explained. “…We all have would like lists for our little ones and our county, our educational facilities, our academics, but we have to function in the confines of faculty regulation.”
Whilst serving on the board, Hamrick reported she has authorized much more than $100 million in school updates without having positioning more burdens on community taxpayers. She mentioned if elected she will continue this do the job.
Incumbent Charlotte Hutchens of District 2 is also running for reelection but was not existing Thursday.
The 3 candidates hoping to take a seat from 1 of these incumbents are Ronald “Ron” Martin of District 1, Clyde “CJ” Schuyler of District 3 and Brandy Stover of District 1.
Martin claimed he has been a bus driver and a volleyball coach in Raleigh County and is also a veteran.
Martin reported the key challenges experiencing the community school method today are the absence of lecturers and assistance staff, like bus motorists, who are leaving mainly because of lower wages and not being ready to avert the kids who are educated in West Virginia from leaving.
“There is no process for the kids to get superior they have to depart to uncover a improved work,” said Martin, citing his personal daughter who remaining West Virginia to go after a career in Atlanta.
Martin claimed he thinks repairing this dilemma starts off with the regional school program and goes hand in hand with better treatment method and fork out for people teaching and caring for the students.
Schuyler claimed he moved to Raleigh County in 2015 soon after retiring from the U.S Maritime Corps. About the years, Schuyler said he’s held a selection of work in the group such as as a standard supervisor at a Dollar Standard, as getting coordinator at Tamarack and a short while ago as an worker of the federal governing administration.
“I’d like to operate for this board of schooling to stand up,” he explained. “I’m a fighter. I am a fighter and I have a enthusiasm and I want to make a variance and I want to make a improve.”
To the voters who are OK with how the board has been operate in the earlier, Schuyler claimed they should vote for the present-day incumbents. But to the voters seeking for a modify, Schuyler claimed he is the candidate for them.
The final board of training candidate to speak, Stover, mentioned she is a mother with a track record in training and she came to Thursday’s function to converse about “problems and discovering solutions.”
“We require far better transparency, better meals high-quality,” she said. “There is a ton of concerns. There is options. We just require to work collectively. Parents should really be much more included, and that is not taking place.”
Stover said the latest board is not responsive when parents or instructors convey concerns to their notice, which is why she is functioning in purchase to be ready to take care of some of these difficulties.
The board of schooling race is nonpartisan, which indicates the victors will be made the decision during the Could 10 Most important Election.
The Raleigh County Board of Education and learning is composed of a few districts. A maximum of two people from the exact district can provide on the five-member board at a time.
The present-day incumbents on the board not up for reelection are Jack “Gordie” Roop from District 2 and Richard V. Snuffer II from District 1.
Raleigh County Circuit Clerk
Of the two candidates working for Raleigh County circuit clerk, only incumbent Paul H. Flanagan, a Democrat, was present at the applicant function.
His only challenger is Republican Robert “Bob” McComas, which indicates the two will not facial area off right until the Nov. 8 Common Election.
Flanagan said he has served as the circuit clerk for the previous 12 decades, in which he uses his small business and purchaser company background day by day.
“It’s my role that we grow to be the finest help services for the judicial process in Raleigh County (and) of any county in the state,” he stated.
1 of the queries questioned of Flanagan by the media panel was regarding transportation and the challenge it imposes on folks when they will need to make their way to the courthouse.
Flanagan mentioned that for the duration of Covid, the judicial procedure started out moving quite a few matters on the web, which include hearings. He added that about a calendar year and a half back, the county began to acknowledge electronic filings. Flanagan explained there are some things that have to be carried out in person, but his office environment performs to be as helpful and useful as possible.
Raleigh County Clerk
The sole candidate for Raleigh County clerk, previous Raleigh County Sheriff Scott Van Meter, a Republican, was also identified at the function but was not supplied any time to speak Thursday as he faces no Republican or Democratic challenger.
Van Meter, who is retired from the West Virginia Condition Police, was very first elected sheriff in 2016 as a Democrat when he ran versus Republican Stan Ellison. In 2020, he ran unopposed as a Democrat.
The Sign-up-Herald claimed in January that present-day Raleigh Clerk Danny Moore, who had served as Raleigh sheriff prior to getting elected clerk in 2016, will not run for a second term.