Sunday, December 04, 2022

Letters to the editor Oct. 19

| October 19, 2022 12:00 AM

Write in Wheeldon

Vote for Deputy Cory Wheeldon as a write-in candidate. Cory is a Montana native who received valuable experience in Yellowstone County (Billings) and knows his way around Sanders County.

I compare Cory to former Sheriff Wally Britton, (a legend in the 1950s) because he would be a no-nonsense, get-the-job-done guy.

The other two candidates are from out of state. Is their goal to “fix” things like where they came from? Do we want that? People move here for the Montana experience and values – a safe place to live, work and raise a family. Cory has those values at heart. He is an honest straight-talker who will carry through on his promises. He can be trusted to fulfill the duties of the office within the letter of the law.

Don't be influenced by the smothering of signs. Lincoln County elected their Sheriff as a write-in candidate, and we can too.

Cory Wheelden didn't attend the candidate forum at the Rex because he was dispatched in the line of duty to an incident minutes before it began.

I ask those who voted for French, Hensley and Stough to support Cory as a write-in candidate. Only 28 votes separated Wheeldon and Fielders in the primary. Cory Wheeldon is a viable candidate and can win with your help!

In closing, everyone I've visited with has the utmost respect and admiration for Deputy Cory Wheeldon. Let's get together and vote him in! Remember to check the box and write in his name.

— Bill Meadows, Trout Creek

Endorses Bukacek

Good governance is not an easy thing to achieve. It requires hard work, patience, skill, and a spirit of selfless service. When James Brown and I came on board as newly elected Montana Public Service Commissioners in early 2021, we found much of the agency in disarray. We immediately set in motion a series of actions to improve the operations, performance, culture, and reputation of the agency.

The Commission reached a major milestone in August when we adopted a formal Strategic Plan with goals, objectives, action plans, and a vision to establish the PSC as a model of good governance as well as the state’s most credible source of information regarding the industries we regulate.

Some of the best characteristics of an ideal commissioner are: 1) a strong work ethic, 2) the ability to objectively study and process complex information, 3) courtesy even when disagreement arises, 4) respect for proper protocols and procedures, 5) fearlessness when it comes to reigning in powerful people and corporations, and 6) a genuine connection with and accountability to the people of Montana.

I am pleased to endorse Dr. Annie Bukacek to fill the District 5 opening on the Montana Public Service Commission because she possesses all these characteristics and more. Her intellectual abilities and work ethic are off the charts, she has a proven track record as a fearless voice for the people, and her training as a medical doctor has honed the type of analytical skills and study habits needed to digest the volumes of complex regulatory data that comes before the commission each week.

Importantly, Annie stands out as the candidate who has been most actively engaging with the commission to learn all about the job. She has observed commission proceedings, studied contested cases, reviewed the Strategic Plan, and dug deep for vital information. She is taking the job seriously and that’s the kind of commissioner we need.

As a current member of the Montana Public Service Commission who knows the job and the agency inside and out, I can honestly say that Dr. Annie Bukacek’s knowledge, intelligence, and work ethic will serve the Commission and the people of Montana well. She’s ready to hit the ground running this winter. Please join me in supporting Dr. Annie Bukacek for election to the Montana PSC.

— Montana Public Service Commissioner Jennifer Fielder

Hinds cares about community

As Grace Lee Boggs so aptly stated, “We urgently need to bring to our communities the limitless capacity to love, serve, and create for and with each other.”

Without love, community becomes a hollow shell subject to the turbulent fires of fear and hate that destroy. Without service to others, a sense of caring for our neighbors, community devolves into a competition of scarcity and limitation. Without the capacity to create for and with each other, a sense of interconnectivity and codependence, community degrades to dystopia.

Community is what emerges when we hold ourselves accountable to being our best, to lifting others up to be their best, and recognizing that all benefit when we collaborate together. Community offers the opportunity to be the ideal of possibility, the space where we dream together, and in reimagining the world together we are all healthier, happier, and more prosperous. Community is the greatest expression of Democracy, recognizing that everyone matters and has a role to play.

When reflecting on the candidates running for HD 13 we need to ask ourselves who embodies the spirit of community? Who has a record of selfless service for others? Who has made a career of helping others? What candidate will represent with courage, care, and heart?

When considering community, Colleen Hinds is the only candidate who has lived and served our community for 50 years with the capacity and spirit of giving and kindness.

— Hannah Hernandez, Heron

Think before voting

Actions speak louder than words. As our county grows, infrastructure needs are going to increase and county commissioners will have to make choices of where to put additional services, and how to obtain the property to do so.

The town of Plains, under Mayor Dan Rowan, forced us to sell 10 acres of our property via eminent domain. We didn’t want a sewage lagoon on our property that we already had plans for, but realizing the need, and the immense power of the government, we offered to negotiate to arrive at a fair and equitable outcome. The last thing we wanted was a multi-year lawsuit. We just wanted to be paid a fair price for our land.

Over a quarter of a million dollars in legal fees paid by the town of Plains; intimidation and threats trying to devalue our land and bully their way to an agreement; and still the town of Plains has more than a dozen obligations left to fulfill, all under Dan Rowan’s leadership.

When asked about the ongoing legal dispute and our efforts to protect our personal property, Dan Rowan accused us of a “childish public relations campaign." This shouldn’t add up to “proven common sense leadership” to anyone who values personal property rights.

We urge you think carefully who you want in a county commissioner seat. Make sure the actions of the man actually align with the slick campaign slogan.

— Nick and Erika Lawyer, Plains

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