Bowling, McCarty vie for GOP Clinton County commission nomination


Bowling, McCarty seek nomination

News Journal



McCarty

McCarty


Bowling


CLINTON COUNTY — With Clinton County Commissioner Pat Haley not seeking re-election to that post, two Republicans are vying for the GOP nod in the May 8 primary election to run for the open seat in November.

Rhonda Wheasler is running unopposed for the Democrats’ nomination in the May primary.

The News Journal asked both Republicans, James Bowling and Mike McCarty, to answer a set of questions for our election preview. Below are the candidates’ responses.

— — —

JAMES BOWLING

Resides in Blanchester

Parents: June and Bill Bowling; siblings: Gillian, Jon, and Cory

Current position(s): Senior Sourcing Leader, GE Aviation (Unison Dayton site); Trustee, Blanchester Board of Public Affairs; Vice Chair, Clinton County Central Committee

Education: Xavier University, Bachelor of Arts, Political Science; Minor, Business and Information Technology; Blanchester High School graduate

Experience in community service/politics:

• Blanchester Troop 47, Eagle Scout

• State Representative David T. Daniels, Director of Constituent & Legislative Affairs

• Blanchester Chamber of Commerce, Businessman of the Year

• Clinton County Foundation, Past Board Member

• Clinton County United Way, Past Secretary

• Leadership Clinton Graduate

• Blanchester Board of Public Affairs, Trustee

• Blanchester Chamber of Commerce, Past Treasurer

• Blanchester Downtown Development Committee, Past Treasurer

• Blanchester Rotary Club, Past President

• Clinton County Central Committee, Vice Chair

Clinton County’s economy has rebounded in the last few years. What does Clinton County need to do to attract more employers/jobs to the county? What measures do you support to keep the county moving forward economically?

Clinton County needs to become a destination, not just for businesses, but for families and homes. In order to do that, we have to start by having the infrastructure and capacity to handle commercial development across the county. Businesses look at where their employees will live, play, and go to school. Ensuring that we have a county-wide approach and cohesive plan is vital. Assisting our existing businesses and attracting new business by enhancing our county tax base, providing incentives for hiring and growth are key, along with gaining support from the Ohio Department of Commerce, and Jobs Ohio. Let’s utilize the valuable resources we have here in Clinton County and join forces with all of the local Chambers, Clinton County Regional Planning Committee, County Port Authority, and all of our Business Development partners to make Clinton County the most successful, attractive county in Southern Ohio.

Have current county commissioners used the “hospital money” wisely? Do you feel that the county should continue to disseminate the interest only, or should more be used now to help with local issues?

A majority of the money thus far has been used to pay off debt, and remains protected from the general fund. Instead of focusing on what did or didn’t happen with hospital funds in the past, I’d like to take this time to emphasize my fiscal plan for this money’s future, which would first and foremost ensure the general health, safety and welfare of our Clinton County citizens. These charitable funds consist of millions of dollars and it is of paramount importance that they be used to benefit not only the health of our local community and its residents, but aid in its fiscal economy as well. My priority will be to create a community improvement fund, commission a board that includes community leaders and the commissioners specifically to monitor the funds, agree on a principle and interest ratio for disbursements, and have the money ready to start flowing back to our communities based upon need and merit.

What do you feel should be priorities for the Clinton County Commission in the next four years?

In order to be successful leaders, we cannot focus on the next four years alone. First, we need to analyze the budget; see where we can save money and minimize tax burdens. I will work hand in hand with the commissioners, developing not only an economical budget, but a strategic vision for the next 18 to 20 years. One issue that needs the immediate attention of the commissioners is the current drug epidemic significantly impacting Clinton County. We must establish a county-wide drug prevention commission, with liaisons from the state and federal government, including elected officials and law enforcement from across the county. Together, we can develop a comprehensive plan on how to attack this prevalent problem that is creating a detrimental effect on our youth. I agree with Judge Rudduck’s comments earlier this year. If this requires funding from the sale of the hospital, I will support it.

How much time can you devote to this position/people of the county if elected?

I promise to dedicate any and all time necessary to be a successful Clinton County Commissioner. If I succeed, Clinton County will succeed, and when Clinton County succeeds, we will all benefit. I will work tirelessly as your Commissioner and stay connected with all of Clinton County’s township, village, and city elected officials and constituents, as well as our nonprofits and community organizations. I look forward to attending private organizational meetings, town councils, non-profits, etc. because I am very eager to listen to everyone’s suggestions and concerns and find solutions that benefit you and the county as a whole. With today’s digital age, I vow to make myself available to all county government officials and I look forward and welcome all constituent input.

Why are you running for this office?

Community and public service have always been extremely important to me, from Boy Scouts to the Statehouse, and now running for county commissioner. I’ve enjoyed my time on local and county boards because it’s a chance to give back to the community that helped raise and shape me and my family. I will always have strong small town values, committed to making our hometowns outstanding. I’m running because I know that even though the voices in the county courthouse are strong, I want all of Clinton County to know that I hear you! I will listen to you, the villages, townships, and city to ensure we are represented equally. My decision-making process will always include fiscal responsibility. I will be transparent, honest, collaborative, make decisions and take action, but will always serve Clinton County with respect. Together we can revitalize Clinton County and make it the best in Southwest Ohio!

In closing, I offer both public and private sector experience, and understand what it takes to serve as an elected official. I will bring change to the courthouse, with an enthusiastic approach and fresh perspective. I sincerely ask for your support during this campaign, and your vote on May 8th!

— — —

MIKE McCARTY

Resides in Clarksville

Wife: Pandy; daughter: Mia; son: Will

Current position(s): Residential/Commercial Real Estate Agent, Bennett Realty

Education: Bachelor of Science in Organizational Management; Wilmington High School

Experience in community service/politics:

• Successful local small business owner for over two decades

• Retired Master Sergeant, Ohio Air National Guard

• Clinton-Massie School Board Member

• Wilmington/Clinton County Chamber of Commerce, Board Member

• Clinton County Foundation, Board Member and Past President

• Business Advisory Council

• Clinton-Massie School Foundation

• Leadership Clinton, Class of 2006

• Saint Columbkille Church, Finance Council Chairman

• Wilmington College, Instructor

Clinton County’s economy has rebounded in the last few years. What does Clinton County need to do to attract more employers/jobs to the county? What measures do you support to keep the county moving forward economically?

I don’t think the government creates jobs, but creates an environment to facilitate job growth within the community. It is just as important to retain and strengthen our relationship with existing companies as it is to encourage additional companies to invest in our community. It is important that we create a more dynamic workforce by understanding the skill sets required in today’s workforce. I believe it is important to collaborate with local employers, local schools and regional academic institutions to develop the skill sets that will move local businesses forward in a global economy. Lastly, it is critical to foster public/private partnerships leveraging county resources to improve quality of life issues for all county residents.

Have current county commissioners used the “hospital money” wisely? Do you feel that the county should continue to disseminate the interest only, or should more be used now to help with local issues?

Once I have a good understanding on all the funds, it is my hope to work with the other commissioners and county stakeholders to develop a plan that takes a portion of the hospital proceeds and places it in a local endowment for which the annual interest is used to provide funding for local projects through a competitive grant process. Secondly, I would like to take a portion of the money to place into an account which will be used for unexpected critical/emergency needs determined by county officials. It is important to avoid using hospital funds for day-to-day county operations.

What do you feel should be priorities for the Clinton County Commission in the next four years?

• Develop a comprehensive economic development plan that includes all the communities within our county

• Develop and implement a plan to effectively leverage the hospital funds

• Create a dynamic workforce development strategy

• Create a pathway for people that have overcome dependency issues to acclimate back to the workforce

How much time can you devote to this position/people of the county if elected?

To be an effective commissioner requires a full-time commitment. I am in a position that allows the flexibility to give this office the time it deserves and requires.

Why are you running for this office?

County commissioners must be astute and have good business sense. Perhaps the most important attributes of a county commissioner are the ability to lead, to listen to the needs of the citizens and other elected officials, to compromise, and to develop a consensus on priority issues to improve the county. I believe I have all the leadership attributes and experience to bring the right organizations and people to the table to write a new chapter for the growth and prosperity of our county. I want to make a positive difference in the community I was raised in and chose to raise my own children.

McCarty
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2018/04/web1_Mike-McCarty-proc.jpgMcCarty

Bowling
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2018/04/web1_james-bowling.jpgBowling

https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2018/04/election-logo_horiz_GPrev-1-.pdf
Bowling, McCarty seek nomination

News Journal