Board of Supervisors Candidate Forum held in Ansley

ANSLEY—More than 50 people gathered at the Ansley Community Center on Tuesday night for the candidate forum hosted by the Custer County Farm Bureau. Six candidates are vying for the District #7 spot on the Board of Supervisors. County Supervisor Don McCullough of Berwyn currently holds the spot but will not run again this year. He has served on the board for 16 years.

Republican candidates:
Dennis W. Fread
Douglas A. Stunkel
John C. Evans
Tom Bailey (Ansley)

Democratic candidates:
Donna Hoblyn-Bittner
Dick L. Holeman

(L-R) Dennis W. Fread, Tom Bailey, John C. Evans, Douglas A. Stunkel, Dick L. Holeman. Donna Hoblyn-Bittner not pictured, she had to leave after opening statement.

Tyson Havranek served as moderator throughout the forum. Audience members had the opportunity to write questions and each candidate was given approximately 90 seconds to answer. Questions varied on topics such as local property taxes, tax increment financing, the county budget, rural infrastructure, livestock friendly programs, size of the county government, alternative energy, and townships.

Few conflicting opinions arose during the night but candidates expressed differences during discussion of tax increment financing, the number of supervisors that should hold office, alternative energy, and the supervisor vs. commissioner format with regard to townships.

Custer County currently consists of 31 townships, 10 villages, and two cities. Moving to a county commissioner format would do away with townships. The primary responses to budget and tax questions were that county dollars need to be managed properly and used efficiently.

Candidates acknowledged that they do not have all of the answers at this time but all seemed eager to listen to their constituents and understand the issues.

Jay Ferris with the Nebraska Farm Bureau said this forum was the first county forum hosted this year, but the organization has hosted several state legislative forums. He said these events provide opportunities for voters and the public to meet candidates and understand where they stand on the issues.

“I thought it was great. We had, you know, a great turnout from the candidates, a great turnout from the voters to come listen to the candidates. I think the voters are going to have a choice to make come May 15,” Ferris said.

The primary election will be held May 15. Early voting begins this next week; early voting and absentee requests must be submitted in writing to the office of the county clerk.

Board of Supervisors District Map

Light Blue: District #1 Bobby Myers
Dark Blue: District #2 Tammy Kleeb
Light Brown: District #3 Barry Fox
Green: District #4 Dwain Bryner
Red/Pink: District #5 Don Olson
Purple: District #6 Matt Eggleston
Yellow: District #7 Don McCullough

Click here to view larger map: Supervisors – District Map