Three Republican candidates announced their run for elected positions during the monthly meeting of the Montezuma County Republicans Thursday at Shiloh Steakhouse.
For the Montezuma County Board of County Commissioners, Joel “Joe” Stevenson is seeking the District 3 seat, and Danny Wilkin is seeking the District 2 seat in the Nov. 3 general election.
The positions are held by Larry Don Suckla and Keenan Ertel, who have served the maximum two four-year terms.
Dave Spiegel plans to run for one of five seats open on the Cortez City Council on April 7.
Stevenson said he is a staunch supporter of property rights and the U.S. Constitution. He was born and raised in the county and has worked as a livestock inspector for the Colorado Department of Agriculture for 22 years.
“I’ve been active in the community and served on different boards, and I also have some experience with state government. I’m currently serving on the Montezuma County Planning Commission,” he said. “I believe I can get the job done.”
Stevenson said he is familiar with the county land use code and is learning more about the inner workings of the county as a planning commissioner. Some of his goals include keeping the county financially secure and governing in a business-friendly way to attract jobs.
Wilkin is running for the District 2 commission seat. He served as party chairman of Montezuma County Republicans and supports property rights and the U.S. Constitution.
Wilkin has a professional background in construction and raises bison on ranches in the county. In 1999, he started Wilkin Home Constructors, a residential building company.
“I would like to be your commissioner because I care deeply about the community,” he said. “I want to bring ideas and solutions, I have business experience and have been active in a variety of organizations.”
Protecting local water rights from outside interests on the Front Range and Lower Basin states is a big priority, Wilkin said. He served for six years on the Montezuma Valley Irrigation Co. board.
“The West Slope is continually under pressure for us to reduce our consumption to allow for more uncontrolled growth” on the Front Range and Lower Basin cities such as Phoenix and Tucson, he said. “Water is truly our lifeblood and needs to be protected and fought for.”
Other priorities are working with the Colorado Department of Transportation for infrastructure needs, working with federal land agencies and addressing social issues in the county.
“I don’t have all the answers, but I will work hard with passion and determination to help Montezuma County and its residents prosper, as well as keeping the county a great place to live,” he said.
Spiegel is running for a seat on the Cortez City Council. He said there needs to be more control of the marijuana industry in the city. He is critical of the median project on Main Street and would work to prevent more of them.
Monitoring the impact of state legislation on Cortez is important, Spiegel said, and recognizing the local political landscape is part of governing.
“I’m moderately positioned on most things, provided it can be morally done. I will make a stand on key conservative issues,” he said. “We have a lot of blue voters in this community, so it is important that we reach out toward the center while staying true to conservative values.”