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Do you think that chain stores in small communities undermine the sales of locally owned retailers?
On November 7, the voters in District One, (Arendahl, Rushford, Holt and Norway townships) will elect a commissioner to serve on the Fillmore County Board. The two candidates on the ballot are the incumbent, Donald Boyum of Peterson, who has served as commissioner for the past 25 years, and Randall Dahl of Rushford. The Journal sent each candidate a questionnaire to find out where they stand on the issues.
Why do you want to be First District Commissioner?
Donald Boyum: I want to use the experience that I have received in the county and the state level of government in a positive way for Fillmore county residents. I enjoy the satisfaction I receive by making decisions that affect the present time and our future. The people of Fillmore County are important to me.
Randall Dahl: I want to be an advocate for the people of Fillmore County. I want to work with the other commissioners in a positive way to move projects forward in a timely and efficient manner. I want to make sure that the taxpayers receive the best benefit for their tax dollars in all levels of county government.
Jordan Township recently passed an interim ordinance restricting both residential and feedlot development. What lead do you think the county should take on zoning issues?
Dahl: I feel the county needs to work with townships and cities to develop comprehensive long-term goals in these areas. Without a comprehensive plan you end up changing the rules midstream to fit the situation. This is fair to no one. I respect the township officers’ decisions as they are trying to do what’s best for their township in protecting the public’s health and safety. However, we must also respect the individuals rights to pursue a living.
Boyum: Fillmore County now uses a Planning Commission to study and make recommendations to the county Board of Commissioners on zoning issues. The Commissioners then make final decisions. I would continue to support this practice.
Should the county build a new courthouse or remodel the existing one? Where would you vote to build a courthouse, if the decision to build a new one is made?
Boyum: I feel there are many bridges to cross before this decision is made. I think the people of Fillmore County should have a voice in the decision. Building a new courthouse would involve a large amount of money. At the present time, it would be difficult for me to vote to move the courthouse away from the courthouse square which was established in the middle 1800’s. The present courthouse was built in 1957. More information is needed to make a final decision.
Dahl: Lots of time, effort, and money have already been put into this issue. The Fillmore County Facilities Evaluation and Planning Committee has provided a very valuable resource in compiling all this information. It is time to take their recommendations and go forward with them on the new building.
It has been said by some people that the current board micro-manages the day to day operations of the county government. What kind of management approach will you bring to the board?
Dahl: No more micro-management. Our commissioners’ time is better spent on the real citizen concern issues that will promote growth and prosperity for the county. I would create a County Administrator position and give department heads back the authority to run their departments. Also quit sending commissioners to meetings to learn about things department heads should know. We’re paying a lot of money for their expertise and we should use it.
Boyum: I feel department heads should be given more responsibility in managing their departments. Then they should be held accountable for their actions.
Next week the candidates for Minnesota House Seat 31B, Greg Davids and Al Hein will be featured in a question and answer forum.