Director Community Outreach, Atlas Sales
Seeking 3rd term as District 1 Calhoun County Board of Commissioners Appointed to Calhoun County Board
Daughter Suzee, son Budde, daughter-in-law Sara
I have been honored to serve my neighbors and the citizens of Calhoun County. I would like to continue this commitment along side my fellow Commissioners. I am committed to my District and County to continue my common sense and respectful approach to County issues.
There have been strong improvements with our County roads since the inception of the Calhoun County Road Department. This is largely due to the outstanding and caring employees of our Road Department along with our committed Management at Calhoun County. Many County Townships have received local road improvements and more are in the process of improvement options in the future. Managing our assets while improving road surfaces is at the forefront of my commitment.
The current system is a functioning option. It allows for much needed improvements to be shared in part by all. Our Road Department did explore a mileage for the entire county however it was eventually decided not to be a viable option. Funding of course is the largest missing piece here. How funds are raised, distributed and restricted needs change.
Yes, currently the county is managing them well. They have seen much improvements and updates. Our master plan in place by the Parks & Rec Board under the direction of Chair Derek King.
Our entire government body as a whole. Each department, department head, manager and elected official is doing all they can with the less is more approach. Since so many pieces of the county intertwine with one another it is difficult to choose just one. As stated above obviously roads. More funding for our outstanding law enforcement officers including our dedicated jail staff. Sheriff Matt Saxton has worked effortlessly to maintain an outstanding department. Safety measurement improvements to our county courthouse is also at the forefront of my intent.
Again the Commission and the County Leadership is committed to a less is more approach which includes taxes. Vice Chair Steve Frisbie is working with BCATS to explore a county wide transit system study that includes a sustainable business plan with private and non-profit funding options. These are the types of programs and initiatives that will help our county thrive.
19 years teaching secondary mathematics grades 8-12.
3 years working as a career mentor with Goodwill Connects Program
none, first time running
Married for 21 years, my husband and I have lived and raised our three boys in Battle Creek. Jacob our oldest on is attending Alma College, Ryan is a sophomore in high school and Brendan our youngest is in middle school.
I would like to serve on the County Board of Commissioners because I believe I have the skills necessary to support our community. I have a Masters Degree in Education, I have taught in the Battle Creek area for 19 years, and I have worked with our work force and youth through the Goodwill Connects Program. All of these experiences have given me a unique view of our county and the needs of our community. I feel I am the best candidate to represent our district because I have been an advocate for our youth and would like to have the chance to advocate for them at the county level. I would be honored to give back to a community that has given my family so much.
I understand the reasons why the past board has decided to change the way our county is dealing with poor road conditions. They dissolved the Road Commission and went with the oversight of the county department to save money and put a process in place to support local communities with their roads. They are operating more efficiently and getting more buying power working with Jackson County. The two counties working together are able to save money and still support local areas with road repairs. With the knowledge I have right now, not being part of these decisions previously, I do think this has been the most effective way to handle out county road repairs.
I think this can be a viable solution to our county road repairs. This has worked well for some local areas and not so well for others. I also think the county needs to take a larger role to help pay for the needed work. We can not leave this up to each of the local communities. As an example both Lee Roy Township and Athens are in need of road repairs and at this time they are not able to get the county match of 60% to fund the repairs. I think this is where the commissioners need to work with the State to gain more money for the repairs. At this time the State has stored housing monies and is not funding local counties like they need to. We cannot leave this burden on our families.
At this time I am satisfied with our county parks and how they are managed. The Battle Creek Historic Bridge Park has been well maintained after the recent improvements. There are many families that utilize the park and enjoy all that it has to offer our community. I would continue to support our county parks as they have so much to offer our community. I would work to improve and maintain out county parks by working with the current Parks and Recreation Commissioners that are the governing body and make recommendations for the parks and the management of them.
The one area that would receive more attention would be community health. This is the number one reason I decided to run for county board. I have worked with our community for 20 years and we are lacking in community health. We do not provided needed education, support, and access to many of our families. Our teenage pregnancy rates are higher than the state average. We do not provided necessary education or access to services to many of our families. I would support more efforts like the community health services at Lakeview Middle School. I have seen firsthand what these service can provide! We need to get a better plan and reach more of our families that need health services.
I do not believe we need to change any of our existing taxes. We cannot ask our families to pay more in taxes. We need to do a better job watching how we spend our county dollars. I would advocate to restructure where our dollars are currently being spent. I believe we have the money necessary to make needed changes in our community. The county board has been operating under a balanced budget and it is critical to our community that we continue to balance our budget. I would advocate for changes in the budget and hold ourselves accountable for the money we are spending. My focus would be on community and mental health, sheriff department, and our roads.