2020 Debate For Commissioner Dist. #1 and #2

Lewis County Commissioners Dist #1 & #2 Debates

Interviews

Edna Fund


Report Card

Edna Fund’s Overall Grade

D+

Question #1: When the Centralia School District runs a new levy, what would you tell your constituents is important about supporting the local levy and the costs they incur, and what would you have done differently to run the campaign?

C

Comments

  • Talked about past issues, very little about what is important for upcoming levy.
  • Edna did give suggestions about doorbelling, community meetings, and better communication but did not give concrete answers as to how to accomplish the suggestions. Having more pictures and graphs is not going to make someone vote for a levy that will cost the voter.
  • “Only brought up bringing businesses to the area. There are many more benefits to a good school district.
    Adding pictures and charts to the campaign was the only suggestion really. Not the actual content of the campaign.”
  • Good answers. Nothing out of the box, but very supportive and honest reflection or current status.
  • Schools are important to community and appreciate specific possible changes … easy to point at … but you can always improve communication.
  • Gave no reasons to support levy, except to compare Centralia to Chehalis.
Question #2: Where do you feel the County has missed the mark and what steps would you take to correct?

D+

  • No answer to what was wrong with what they have done so no steps to correct except communication.
  • She did point out different examples of where the county was deficient but did not offer any corrective steps.
  • I guess the only place the county has missed the mark in Edna’s opinion is communication. She also cited they are slow to react to things due to state and fed rules out of the county’s control. By her answer all other things the county has done are all good I guess…..
  • Edna has issue with ownership. I made a mistake isn’t in her vocabulary.
  • Agreed that the county needs better communication, but having issues with the press and getting the word out about the good things the county has done is not the county missing it’s mark. It’s saying that the county didn’t miss the mark, that the county in fact got a bullseye, however nobody hear about it.
  • Bad messaging or bad message. Same red tape and mandates as other counties.
  • Communication is where County has missed the mark, but no steps were given to correct this issue.
Question #3: Projections of a large decrease in sales tax income countywide in the upcoming year looks to be as high as a possible 20% downturn in tax revenue. What are your ideas to supplement that loss in the budget?

D+

  • NO mention of projections on possible downturn. Mentioned budget of $100 mill with 81% of this going to law and justice but nothing about curtailment to address a possible downturn.
  • Edna did not answer the question. She skirted the issue by just stating the obvious of the costs. No ideas for except for using Covid dollars
  • Edna didn’t really get specific about anything other than cuts are hard to do. She eluded that the cities have more of a problem with this issue than the county although it seems that both entities should be working together on this issue.
  • She doesn’t answer the question, which is a common theme with Commissioner Fund.
  • Didn’t actually address the question. Just stated that it was hard everywhere and that we have experienced people that will figure it out.
  • “I believe” … as a county commissioner you don’t know what the numbers are for your budget? You should know the projection numbers. Good acknowledgement of the difficult decisions to come.
  • Not as bad as thought. Projects 8%. Cities hit harder. Tough to cut when Law and Justice takes all the budget. No ideas to supplement.
  • Edna gave no ways to supplement the loss in budget, only ways the county spends money.
Question #4: Do you think .09 Funds have been spent appropriately in the last couple of years when relating to high paying quality job-creating projects?  Why or Why not, please give a few examples?

C-

  • No examples of .09 fund use in past. just looking at phone for notes.
  • She did mention this year’s appropriations that will help job creation but how does educating about the Chehalis Basin create high paying jobs? no suggestions as to how to communicate and encourage applications
  • Lowes provides low paying jobs. Where are the high paying jobs she keeps talking about creating?
  • Cited the Beneroya funding as an example which would lead to high paying jobs.
  • Gave a few examples of where she believes the money is being well spent. Blamed everything else on lack of applications.
  • Like the specific answers and the recognition that there are groups who should be applying.
  • Better job communicating seems to be a trend. More apps-How will you get them?
  • Did not mention how .09 funds have been spent in relation to creating jobs.
Question #5: You are sitting right here in the Chambers’ Lewis County Business Recovery Center for Covid relief. Many Chamber members and private sector donors have invested in the center hoping for community wide support. The Chamber worked hard to create an all inclusive program for business relief county wide. Do you believe the County should be using CARES Act money to help support the facility and the business recovery process at the Chamber?

D+

  • It is my understanding that Ms. Fund did not support the Center due to the fact Alicia Bull was involved. The county also did not give any funding for the center and even held up the Trans Alta Funding.
  • $$ for other non-profits?? Maybe set history aside??
  • I guess CARES act money for the center is a “No” but there could be other funds available. She seemed to kind of dodge the actual question.
  • Didn’t answer the question. Talked about Transalta and future grants, not CARES Act money.
  • Communication again-Move forward, not backwards.
  • Commissioner Fund actively campaigned against funding the Chamber, so now that it’s election time she changes her tune?

Sean Swope


Report Card

Sean Swope’s Overall Grade

B+

Question #1: When the Centralia School District runs a new levy, what would you tell your constituents is important about supporting the local levy and the costs they incur, and what would you have done differently to run the campaign?

B

Comments

  • Discussed upcoming and good examples of needed support.
  • Good concise ideas, understands the marketing of the levy campaign, I like that he brought up the economy of the City
  • Pretty muddled response. Did actually have suggestions on running a better campaign. Transparency and messaging are incredibly important.
  • No real solutions. Agree with strong community and industry, but this is outside of the scope of the question.
  • Investment back into our community, in the kids. 100% supports. Good advice for district to speak the same message.
Question #2: Where do you feel the County has missed the mark and what steps would you take to correct?

A-

  • Leadership or lack thereof. Support for Centralia Station and having same-page outlook throughout the county.
  • Great answer! Exactly right
  • I like his answer that the county lacks leadership and we need to get away from the long history of small town politics and put personal feelings aside and all work towards common goals to improve the county.
  • Setting aside personal issues to work towards the betterment of the county is drastically important. No other specifics, but isn’t wrong.
  • Poor leadership is an issue. Separating personal and professional is key.
  • Leadership. Chamber, EDC, County, Port, Cities need to work together.
Question #3: Projections of a large decrease in sales tax income countywide in the upcoming year looks to be as high as a possible 20% downturn in tax revenue. What are your ideas to supplement that loss in the budget?

B-

  • Good to have knowledge of just how well some businesses are doing and contributing to help mitigate possible downturn.
  • He did not give concrete ideas as to how to immediately supplement the loss in the budget
  • His only answer was to fully open the county, although this should proceed faster than what the state government has allowed a county commissioner should have a better more specific answer as to where we can get more efficient during a budget shortfall.
  • Looked back retroactively towards where we would be. Didn’t offer much other than opening the county back up. Isn’t going to replace what has already been lost.
  • Less drop than projected. Got off on a tangent with science and COVID. Focus on Growth is good especially the green. Like it or not, that is the future.
  • County should open – let businesses open back up to normal capacity.
Question #4: Do you think .09 Funds have been spent appropriately in the last couple of years when relating to high paying quality job-creating projects?  Why or Why not, please give a few examples?

C+

  • Needs to research .09 to better understand.
  • good suggestion about Winlock sewer extension but needs to research the subject more
  • No real specific answer as he is not up to speed on where the county has spend these funds.
  • Didn’t give specifics about how they are creating jobs.
  • didn’t know much. Winlock is a good option.
Question #5: You are sitting right here in the Chambers’ Lewis County Business Recovery Center for Covid relief. Many Chamber members and private sector donors have invested in the center hoping for community wide support. The Chamber worked hard to create an all inclusive program for business relief county wide. Do you believe the County should be using CARES Act money to help support the facility and the business recovery process at the Chamber?

A-

  • ”County has told chamber you’re not important anymore.” Stated this has to stop.
  • Great answer. He understands the dynamics
  • I think he provided a great answer as to supporting the center and how the county has isolated itself from the chamber in this case and that kind of thing needs to stop in the future under strong leadership doing what is best for the county and it’s citizens.
  • Supports chamber.

Bobby Jackson


Report Card

Bobby Jackson’s Overall Grade

B-

Question #1: Projections of a large decrease in sales tax income countywide in the upcoming year looks to be as high as a possible 20% downturn in tax revenue. What are your ideas to supplement that loss in the budget?

B-

Comments

  • Well informed and thoughtful answer. Like the way he is looking at the present and future.
  • Did not discuss process much as since his belief (hopefully true) is not as bad as projected.
  • Good, concise answer.
  • He does not feel there has been much of a downturn and is more in a wait and see over the next couple of quarters what it actually is. In the short term reign in spending and hiring was about all he could offer to save money.
  • Knowledgable and had some plans to abate spending.
Question #2: Where do you feel the County has missed the mark and what steps would you take to correct?

C+

  • Tough question with a decent answer. Like they way he takes personal responsibility.
  • Talked about self but not much about county
  • Spoke about himself not the County as a whole
  • Bobby turned the question into where has he missed the mark as a commissioner and did not really answer for where the county could use improvement.
Question #3: The Port of Centralia in District #1 has landed several sizable new tenants in the last few years, yet the Chehalis Port District #2 seems to struggle with tenant expansion and family waged job creation. What do you as a commissioner see as the hurdles with development in the Port of Chehalis and what are ideas you may have to support Port expansion?

D+

  • Acknowledges issue … would like him to offer some partnership possibilities between county/port.
  • Let other commissioners answer.
  • no answer
  • Bobby had no answer and deferred to the port commissioners and leadership team.
  • Didn’t answer the question, but at least admitted he wasn’t able to answer instead of making something up.
Question #4: Do you think .09 Funds have been spent appropriately in the last couple of years when relating to high paying quality job-creating projects?  Why or Why not, please give a few examples?

B-

  • Good specific examples and knowledge of the subject.
  • discussed examples OK
  • did have good examples. I disagree that using the money for the Chehalis Basin project is creating jobs
  • He had knowledge of where the funds have been used. His answer of the Benaroya project and flood control could correlate to high paying jobs in the future.
  • Didn’t talk about producing jobs but spoke with knowledge and confidence.
Question #5: You are sitting right here in the Chambers’ Lewis County Business Recovery Center for Covid relief. Many Chamber members and private sector donors have invested in the center hoping for community wide support. The Chamber worked hard to create an all inclusive program for business relief county wide. Do you believe the County should be using CARES Act money to help support the facility and the business recovery process at the Chamber?

A-

  • County needs to look at what Chamber can do. Discussed they had CARE funds but not directly how this could apply to Chamber.
  • Great answer…now make it happen
  • Supports small business
  • He support using those dollars to support the Recovery Center, time will tell if that happens.

Dr. Lindsey Pollock


Report Card

Dr. Linsey Pollock’s Overall Grade

C+

Question #1: Projections of a large decrease in sales tax income countywide in the upcoming year looks to be as high as a possible 20% downturn in tax revenue. What are your ideas to supplement that loss in the budget?

C+

Comments

  • Discussed infrastructure slightly
  • Has ideas as to where to cut
  • Lindsey had a plan as to where to keep spending (infrastructure) to continue to attract business to the area. Cuts could be made to non essential spending and look at early retirements.
  • Talked about what she wouldn’t cut vs. supplementing the lost revenue.
Question #2: Where do you feel the County has missed the mark and what steps would you take to correct?

B-

  • Planning at larger level can also include department planning … and be pushed out further.
  • Planning Look at 10 – 20 year plans instead of concentrating short-term.
  • Good answer
  • She had a great answer in lack of long term planning by the county, we need that!
Question #3: The Port of Centralia in District #1 has landed several sizable new tenants in the last few years, yet the Chehalis Port District #2 seems to struggle with tenant expansion and family waged job creation. What do you as a commissioner see as the hurdles with development in the Port of Chehalis and what are ideas you may have to support Port expansion?

C-

  • Getting groups working together is a good idea, would have liked to hear plan on how to do that … easier said than done.
  • Gather forces
  • Didn’t answer question about Port…gave broad answer
  • No real specific answers relating directly to what the port could do. I did like her answer of getting the ports, chambers, EDC all on the same page and working together.
  • Talked about working together but didn’t talk about hurdles.
Question #4: Do you think .09 Funds have been spent appropriately in the last couple of years when relating to high paying quality job-creating projects?  Why or Why not, please give a few examples?

B-

  • Like the concept of the answer … would have liked to hear specific ideas.
  • bandage fix?
  • needs more knowledge about .09 funding
  • She feels that these funds should go to bigger longer term projects that could help the county long term. These projects could be identified with better long term planning.
Question #5: You are sitting right here in the Chambers’ Lewis County Business Recovery Center for Covid relief. Many Chamber members and private sector donors have invested in the center hoping for community wide support. The Chamber worked hard to create an all inclusive program for business relief county wide. Do you believe the County should be using CARES Act money to help support the facility and the business recovery process at the Chamber?

D-

  • Legitimate concern of the current process.
  • Drive to Chehalis??? No Answer
  • Thank you for your honest answer…but no support
  • Didn’t answer the question. Seemed as if she didn’t even know what the LCBRC is or what they had to offer.
  • Although I appreciate her honest answer she is just thinking of herself and her own business situation. As a community leader you need to think beyond yourself and look at all the business’s in the community and what is best for them.
  • Didn’t shy away from stating her beliefs. Narrow point of view. She is one type of business located in a specific area. Just because she wouldn’t in her line of work, doesn’t mean that it’s not an important resource for others.

Debates

Edna Fund and Sean Swope


Bobby Jackson and Dr. Lindsey Pollock