Ann Brau and Trevor White run for County Supervisor

On March 7th, Harris will open its doors for early voting for the position of Poweshiek County Supervisor.  The S&B conducted email interviews with candidates Ann Brau (D) and Trevor White (R) to learn more about their experience and their ideas for Poweshiek County.

Why are you qualified for the position of Poweshiek County Supervisor?

Ann Brau: I have a degree from Iowa State University in Agriculture Education and have thirteen years experience teaching at the high school level in the English Valleys and Grinnell-Newburg school systems.  My business experience is as a claims adjuster for ten years at Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Co.  Currently I share responsibilities for operating Compass Plant CSA, Grinnell’s first CSA, with Lisle Dunham.  Some of the volunteer work I have been involved in include leadership positions in Cub Scout pack 347 and Boy Scout troop 313, serving as a board member for the Grinnell Community Day Care and Pre-school and church related service work.

Trevor White: One reason I feel I am qualified for the position of Poweshiek County Supervisor is that I have the knowledge of operating my own business for the past seven years.  My business is a service oriented business and has thrived during the economic downtimes through my common sense and responsible financial decisions.  I have grown up in Poweshiek County and am now raising a family here and will be a member of this county for years to come.  I am a good listener, seek out the facts before all decision-making and have a great interest in continuing to grow our county.

What do you most want to accomplish?

AB: If I become a supervisor, I would pursue ways to educate the county residents on the responsibilities and functions of the Board of Supervisors.  By elucidating what the board does, I feel this will improve the public’s understanding of the fiscal issues facing Poweshiek County.  Economic trends indicate that county services will need to become more efficient and effective with little help from state and federal revenues.  This will dictate that there is a fair and judicious review process of county budgets to put the revenues to the best use for our citizens.

TW: Some of the items I would like to accomplish as a Poweshiek County Supervisor are; keeping the lines of communication open with all county employees, working on the budget with all elected officials and department heads to make sure we get the most “bang for our buck,” improvement of the county secondary road system for the safety of our citizens, and work closely with CPC (Central Point of Coordination) to ensure the care of our disabled citizens.

How will you impact the lives of students at Grinnell College?

AB: Students are directly impacted by county operations through the countywide Emergency-911 system, Library services at the Drake Library, and maintenance of county roads when they travel throughout the county.  The sheriff department is important as support for security on and off campus as needed.  Students may also benefit from mental health and other medical and social services provided by county funds.  Anytime Grinnell students go to a county conservation site, this involves oversight by the Board of Supervisors.  Finally, this election provides an opportunity for every student to become a responsible citizen of the community you live in by participating in this election process.

TW: I will impact the lives of students at Grinnell College by promoting the growth of current and future county business to make sure the infrastructure is intact for the college community.  I would work close with any college student regarding issues or concerns they may have at the county level.

What is the biggest problem facing Poweshiek County today?

AB: All governmental bodies are dealing with monetary issues now.  Budgeting projected revenues is becoming more difficult as state and federal legislators delay making timely decisions, cut funding, and add rules and regulations without supplying adequate funding to county governments.  Past practices have put Poweshiek County on relatively stable ground, but the opportunity to expand services is gravely limited by current pressing needs with roads, social services, and staffing requests.  Using the revenue money wisely and judiciously for the greatest benefit of our county’s residents is our most pressing issue.

TW: Money to operate all entities at 100%!  The cost of running the county often exceeds the tax dollars coming in.  When that happens, cuts in all areas can be the result, such as county roads, law enforcement and all other county departments.  The trick is to promote Poweshiek County so that the tax base will grow, resulting in more services funded at the county level.