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Showing posts from April, 2014

Greg Hawkins - County Auditor

No meetings

Greg Hawkins and I never met.  I went to four county-level meet-the-candidates meetings, and he did not attend any of them.  I suppose that he felt, being an incumbent, that it was unnecessary.  Unfortunately, this meant that I have yet to be able to discuss issues with him in person.

I will try and meet with him at convention this morning.

More detail soon, but I've got to run!

Mel Nimer - Candidate for County Council at Large

First Meeting, 25 March 2014

My first meeting with Mel lasted about 2 minutes and unfortunately contained very little information about what he would do as a county council member.  Essentially I had time enough to hear him state that he is currently an accountant and as such would bring additional fiscal discipline to the table.

Second Meeting, 31 March 2014

After listening to several very predictable speeches from other candidates, Mel was a surprise.  He is a very amiable fellow and an engaging public speaker.  He is very approachable.  These traits alone place him higher on my list.

He stated that his first item of business was to clean up the budget by prioritizing

He also said that he asks three questions when deciding whether or not he will give his vote for adding an item to the budget:  Can we afford it? Do we need it? Should the county be providing it?  He stated that if he gets a "no" on any one of those items, then he is not for adding it to the budget.

On those gr…

Scott Tingley - County Auditor

First Meeting - 31 March 2014

Actually, my very first encounter with Scott Tingley was to read a brief fire fight between him and his opponent, Greg Hawkins.

Mr. Hawkins first sent an email to county delegates with the somewhat cryptic subject of "Unfortunate Intrigue".  I had Mr. Hawkins as a high school teacher many (not so many...) years ago, and I recognized this as just part of his personality.  Its contents, however, disappointed me as it contained a tired and worn out political strategy that claims Mr. Hawkins opponent is not a genuine Republican and is running only to make it easier for the Democratic candidate to get elected.  His justification was that he learned that Mr. Tingley had registered as a Republican for the first time in order to run for this race and was previously a Democrat.

Mr. Tingley replied also with an email to county delegates.  He first stated that he was not a career politician like Mr. Hawkins who has "run for political office over and o…

Micah Bruner - County Council At Large "A"

First Meeting - 31 March 2014

Micah Bruner's background is as an attorney, he currently serves as general counsel for a local small business.

In the few minutes that I had to talk with Mr. Bruner, he spoke on a handful of items:

First, he talked about the county council's approval of improvements made to the South Towne Expo Center.  There was $500,000 worth of signage improvements approved to convert an existing sign into a digital sign and also add a new sign on another corner of the property.  Mr. Bruner stated first that he believes the county government shouldn't be in the business of owning and maintaining an expo center.  Regarding signage, he disagreed that a digital sign was necessary to attract more patrons since the conferences that the Expo Center hosts are niche enough to not require it.  He said something to the effect of "Those who were going to attend the Gem Faire already all knew about it." He stated that he would liquidate the center given an o…

Brett Helsten - County Council At Large "A"

First Meeting - 31 March 2014

Brett Helsten is a distribution manager for a welding supply company.  He lives in Kearns and currently serves on the Kearns community council.

Unfortunately, I had the least amount of time with Brett, but I did have a chance to talk about a few items.

He is a strong advocate of revive volunteerism at the county level.  He states that today the county spends money on hiring service providers where volunteers could do the job just as well.  Specifically, he mentioned the aging and elder care services that the county provides.  He didn't offer a lot of detail on the viability of getting a reliable stream of volunteers for any service, but simply stated that the county isn't trying that route at all in the first place.

In this regard, he reminds me of Jake Parkinson who wants to "go back" to more old-fashioned ways.  Maybe it will work, maybe it won't.  I failed to ask him what kind of success he has had in rounding up volunteers at th…