Archive for Wednesday, July 12, 2000

Two county commission candidates call for change

July 12, 2000

Two candidates for the Leavenworth County Commission say they want to increase cooperation among commissioners.

"It is important because you only have three county commissioners and they do need to work together," said Karl Brown, Lansing, who is seeking the Third District seat on the commission. "The ones who are there now haven't done justice to the taxpayer because of their conflict."

Pat Young, Basehor, agreed.

"There seems to be a conflict between commissioners," she said. "There seems to be a problem working together. I enjoy people and I like working with people. Maybe we can get our commissioners where they're thinking about the best for our community."

Young and Brown are candidates for the Third District county commission seat. The primary election is Aug. 1. Voters will have an opportunity to cast votes for one of these five Democrats: Wayne Eldridge, the incumbent, who is from Basehor; Jack Wolfe, Tonganoxie; Denzel Gibbens, Tonganoxie; Pat Albert, Tonganoxie; or Young or these three Republicans: Joseph Daniels Jr., Tonganoxie, Wilma Schuler, Basehor; or Brown.

Brown, 56, said he hopes his Lansing residency doesn't work against him.

"I traditionally set a precedence that whoever I'm an advocate for I will represent them. I will do my utmost to ensure they receive fair and impartial consideration," he said.

Key issues to Brown are:

Hiring a county administrator to run day-to-day operations of the county, allowing commissioners to take the long view. "County commissioners are micro-managing the affairs of the county," he said.

Ensure the county's growth is well-managed.

He believes the county can run more efficiently and effectively.

He would like to reduce real property taxes, as well as taxes on business equipment. He would raise additional revenue by increasing fees or charging new fees for certain county services.

"And I'm for sales tax over property tax any day of the week," said Brown, a retired military man who's spent more than seven years on the Lansing City Council.

Young, who soon will retire from her job of handling secretarial and budgetary duties at a Kansas City country club, said she believes the county is missing the federal gravy train.

"I know money's available," said Young, who has worked for both the Basehor and Oskaloosa school districts as clerk of the school board. "I don't want to raise taxes, but I think with all of the new building going on, maybe we can do some shifting and get some federal money."

Young is concerned about the condition of the county's roads.

"We just really need to look at that and see how we can better them," she said.

Her primary goal, however, is to ensure Leavenworth County's government is as efficient as possible.

"I like finance and budgets, and I've been blessed to be able to do them well," she said.

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