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October 17, 2012
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Election 2012: Lyon County Commissioner, District 3

Email: rfierroNV@gmail.comExplain your background and how this qualifies you for the position you are seeking.I am a native Nevadan and grew up in Lyon County. After graduating from Dayton High School I joined the U.S. Air Force and later transferred to the Nevada Air National Guard. I was a First Sergeant and received an honorable discharge in September 2011 with over 23 years of service. I attended Western Nevada College and the Community College of the Air Force, earning four Associate degrees: Electrical & Mechanical Technology, Mathematics, Human Resources, and Liberal Arts. I achieved a Bachelor of General Studies from the University of Nevada, Reno. I am currently enrolled in the Certified Public Officials Program at UNR. I am active in my community. I was a deputy for the Lyon County Sheriff's Search & Rescue team and a member of the Dayton Regional Advisory Board. I served on the Planning Commission for over 8-1/2 years and was a former chair. I received a gubernatorial appointment to the Lyon County Commission in 2010 and currently am the vice chair. I sit on the Mason Valley Conservation District, the Regional Transportation Commission, the Comstock Historical District Commission and the Carson Area Metropolitan Planning Organization. I enjoy helping with 4-H and attending community events.What are the top 3 issues facing the county, what should be done to resolve them?The main issues facing Lyon County are high unemployment, a huge road maintenance deficit and difficulties in dissemination of information. Lyon County is one of the most distressed counties in the state of Nevada. We need jobs desperately so we can grow our way out of these current economic times. The county has started addressing this issue by funding the Northern Nevada Development Authority (NNDA) to act as the county's Economic Development Authority. This year they have been instrumental in bringing in businesses to Lyon County. The next step is updating and streamlining outdated and overly restrictive codes and ordinances. This will make it easier for current businesses to stay in and/or expand their businesses and for new companies to locate in our county. We currently have a $30 million road maintenance deficit. There are over 540 miles of maintained roads throughout the county. When roads deteriorate and/or fail it creates a safety problem for law enforcement, first responders and for citizens. It also creates economic problems as failed roads deter businesses from coming into the area and the cost of replacing roads places an enormous burden on the budget. We need to assure that in the future the county will perform quality assurance tests and ensure that the area where the roads are constructed are fully built out before final acceptance. A recurring maintenance schedule needs to be created and adhered to; this will extend road life and reduce costs. We all need to make a point to purchase our fuel locally so that the money spent in fuel tax remains in our county. Lyon County has over 52,000 people dispersed in eight unique communities over an area that covers 2,016 square miles. This makes it difficult to consistently and accurately get information out to the public. At the beginning of my term I suggested that the county create a Facebook page and one was created in January of 2011. Presently we have an average of 900 viewers per week and a potential coverage of 74,000 people from those who “like” our page. I believe that we work for the people and need to make ourselves available to the public. I am a proponent of having a few meetings during the year held in some of the other communities, especially when an issue has a potential huge impact on a particular area.Why should voters choose you over the other candidates?Having grown up in the area and choosing to return after honorably serving our country I consider Lyon County my home. I am passionate about bettering our county and our communities. I started my involvement at the grass roots level and worked my way up over the past 10 years. I was instrumental at getting the new Master Plan approved and I am committed to seeing it implemented in the near future. I have the needed experience without being entrenched in the unnecessary politics that we are all tired of dealing with. I desire to listen more than speak; we have far too many politicians who are unable to hear the wishes of the constituents because they are too busy spewing rhetoric. I believe honesty and integrity are paramount in being a good public servant. This position is about putting others first and teamwork; I am the most qualified candidate.

Current Occupation: Senior Field Representative for the US House of RepresentativesContact Information:Email: ElectKenGray@gmail.comWeb Site: www.ElectKenGray.comExplain your background and how this qualifies you for the position you are seeking.I joined the US Air Force in 1987, transitioned into the Air National Guard and accumulated more than 21 years of full-time service and 25 total years of service. Having achieved the Air Force's highest enlisted rank, Chief Master Sergeant (E9), my military service included multiple tours in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and other overseas locations. I currently work as a Senior Field Representative for the US House of Representatives. In addition, I was appointed by Gov. Sandoval to serve on the Standing Committee on Judicial Ethics and Election Practices for the state of Nevada.I earned multiple associates degrees in Allied Health Science, Health Care Management, and Mechanical & Electrical Technology. In addition, I have a Bachelor of Science degree, and completed extensive graduate work in Organizational Leadership and Human Resources.Lyon County residents should choose me to represent them because after a long career of military service I possess the strategic forethought, decision making abilities, and real-world experience necessary to move our county forward. I have the strength to make the hard decisions necessary to keep our county solvent and will always make decisions without regard to political ramifications. I believe in strong conservative values, morals and traditions.What are the top 3 issues facing the county, what should be done to resolve them?Lyon County faces many issues; however, I believe the top three are the budget, economic development, and communication/government accessibility. My budgetary philosophy is a "Cut & Balance" approach towards the budgetary process — a proposed spending increase in one area needs to be offset by a cut in another area, and if tax revenues decrease then spending cuts must be implemented. Fiscal accountability needs to be present at all levels of government. Every county employee has a duty and responsibility to ensure taxpayer monies are spent wisely. Furthermore, every time there is a proposed tax increase, it must include a two-year "sunset clause". Too often taxes for one purpose morph into a need for another purpose and the tax survives indefinitely. Finally, I will fight to ensure the voters decide proposed tax increases.Regarding economic development, we must modernize legacy economic policies and align with the governor's economic development plan. The county should increase its support to the Northern Nevada Development Agency, and actively partner with them to ensure establishing new businesses in, or relocating existing businesses to the county is a positive experience. When levying fees or taxes on businesses it should be done with the greatest respect and realization that it should only be done to the minimum extent necessary. The belief voiced by my opponent that if “they can't afford it, they shouldn't be in business in Lyon County” is the absolute wrong approach we should take with the job creators in our county. We should be a beacon to attract new businesses to Nevada and ultimately our county. Additionally, I will fight to ensure commercial, industrial, and residential development is well thought out and balanced.The geographical separation of the communities within our county creates some unique problems of communication with and accessibility to county government. I will be readily accessible to the citizens of our community — our success must be a team effort. I will strive to get our communities working with each other and partnering with the county. As a part of this philosophy I intend to host regular meetings between community members and myself. The best and most innovative ideas will not come from me, but from residents of our county and I will always make myself available to them. I want to be a catalyst for innovation and a champion for new ideas that move Lyon County forward.Why should voters choose you over the other candidates?I strongly believe honesty, integrity and the ability to accept responsibility are essential values. Far too often, these traits are lacking in our public officials. I can be counted on to go forth with decisions because I believe it's the right thing to do, and not the result of personal or political motivation. There will be no question as to where I stand on issues and will always deliver truthful answers and opinions. We may not always agree on the issues, but you will always know where I stand and what my motivation is. I will be open to discussing differences of opinion and will be strong enough to admit when I am wrong. And when I make a mistake, I will own up to it and not pass the blame on to someone else. I will be a champion and a strong voice for all residents of Lyon County.

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Oct 17, 2012 03:04AM Published Oct 17, 2012 02:46AM Copyright 2012 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.