Written by Michelle Corless, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
JOHNSON COUNTY (KWWL) -
In January Sally Stutsman resigned from the Johnson County Board of Supervisors to serve in the Iowa House of Representatives. Next week Johnson County residents head to the polls to choose her replacement. The candidates are Democrat Terry Dahms and Republican John Etheredge.
Terry Dahms has served on the Johnson County Planning and Zoning Commission for the past four years. He believes the top issue in the county is the need for a new justice center.
"If we don't solve it, we're going to have to deal with the cost of transferring prisoners and we're going to have to deal with issues of the courthouse," said Dahms.
If elected as a supervisor March 5th, Dahms says he would work to make sure a justice center referendum passes in May. He also says he wants to make sure Johnson County residents don't slip through the cracks during the regionalization of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities services.
"It needs to be worked out so that it benefits all counties," said Dahms. "What we want to make sure is that there are no unintended consequences of that agreement."
John Etheredge has worked for several small businesses and has lived in rural Johnson County for most of his life. All of the county's current supervisors live in Iowa City. Etheredge hopes to be a voice for farmers and people who live outside the city limits, and wants to see improved farm to market roads.
"We're talking about making some roads wider so that way when a car encounters a farm implement you don't have the car trying to pull of almost into the ditch to let the farm implement pass by," said Etheredge.
Etheredge believes one of the top issues in the county is the possibility of higher taxes. He says if he's elected, he'll fight to make sure taxes aren't raised.
"It hurts them quite a bit to have more of their discretionary income go to the county when they're having to deal with less and the county's demanding more," said Etheredge.
The candidate elected will serve on the Board of Supervisors until December 2014. The Johnson County special election is on Tuesday, March 5th. The auditor's office will be open from eight until six this week for early voting.
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