PREBLE COUNTY — Incumbent Preble County Commissioner Rodney Creech is running for re-election, and faces Libertarian candidate Eric White in Tuesday’s election.
Creech, a resident of West Alexandria, is a current commissioner, a fourth-generation farmer, and owner of Lawn Plus, Superior Ag Solutions and The 1808 Cafe. He previously served as Twin Township trustee.
White, who resides in Gasper Township, is retired and was a self-employed small businessman for over 30 years. He has been a Gasper Township trustee for 23 years.
Each candidate provided their responses to the following profile questions:
Community Involvement: Preble County Chamber of Commerce member, Preble County Development Partnership member, Preble County Senior Center Board member, Community of Faith Church member, SAPP, COC, Historical Society member, Art Association member and I serve on the Morehead State University’s Department of Ag committee.
Why are you the most qualified candidate for this position? Over the last four years I have learned a lot about the county and how it operates. With four years of experience under my belt, I will be able to work even more efficiently during my second term. I have been able to build great relationships with the elected officials in our county and many outside of the county. I also feel that my business experience gives me a great advantage. One of my strongest attributes is being open and honest, connecting with people, communicating and making things happen. I love serving Preble County and would appreciate your support!
What is the most crucial issue facing the office you are seeking, and how would you address it? Preble County has several challenges in front of us. We continue to see drug problems (just like every community) and will continue our efforts to gain ground. Our county budget is affected greatly by increased housing costs at the jail, indigent defense and Job and Family Services. While I don’t have a coverall answer, my efforts in working with the Sheriff, Mental Health and Recovery Board, Job and Family Services will remain steady as we try to overcome the financial challenge.
Another issue we are being faced with is Sewer District 6 in Glenwood. I am fighting hard for our residents and will continue to find options to keep the cost to a minimum but the best case scenario would be that it doesn’t happen.
If elected, what would be your chief priorities? To continue to be a good steward of tax payer dollars, work hard and promote Preble County. I will continue communicating with our constituents and keep them up to date with what’s going on in the county. Workforce development is a passion of mine and one goal is to educate and keep our young workforce in the county. Please like my Facebook page if you want to get daily and weekly updates.
Community Involvement: Preble Shawnee Community Advisory Team
Why are you the most qualified candidate for this position? I am tired of the constant 2 -1 vote against conservative commissioner Robertson. I know that a mill is $900,000 in Preble County. I will always put taxpayers ahead of big government spending because that’s what the government should do — it should work for the people. I would have questioned the developmentally disabled two-mill levy ($35,000/week increase} resulting in a $30,000 raise for an assistant administrator. It’s important to balance government spending. When spending gets out of control, it only hurts us.
What is the most crucial issue facing the office you are seeking, and how would you address it? High taxes is a big issue for everyone, not just for property owners and renters. Lowering taxes would help the county thrive by growing the local economy. Too often, the administration we have running our government is obsessed with growth within their department, insisting on programs that may start with a grant, but then soon become the responsibility of the local taxpayer. The $30,000 raise given to an assistant administrator is a perfect example. I want to represent the taxpayers of Preble County and their interests.
If elected, what would be your chief priorities? The cost of taxes for property owners and renters is too high; I will fight the increasing cost of property taxes and would force departments to live within their budgets. In a small rural area like Preble County, the county should not be the largest employer; so, rather than government jobs, I will work to create more private-sector jobs.
Because of social programs, people who rely on government programs and bring methamphetamine and opiates into the county are attracted to Preble County as a new place to live. I will oppose increases to programs that benefit people who abuse the system; we need to take care of our own.
Another challenge is the expansion of government. I will represent the taxpayers of Preble County.
After a career as a self-employed businessman for most of my life, I know that a positive attitude, less government restriction (e.g., zoning), and lower taxes all encourage business growth. I would attract private-sector growth by encouraging the building trades and other needed skilled employers to have job fairs aimed at teenagers beginning in high school. There are a lot of good jobs out there, and over the years, commuters have made Preble County a great place to live.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.