Election Guide: Jerry Reinartz for District 3 County Commissioner

Published 11:52 am Friday, October 29, 2010

Jerry Reinartz is the challenging candidate for District 3  County Commissioner

Q. When facing budget deficits, county board members often have to choose between increasing taxes and reducing services to the public. How would you find a balance between the two?
A. In a tough economy such as we are in, taxpayers and families are forced to make tough choices. They expect government to do the same. Government can just raise taxes to solve their budget problems. Mr. Hillier wants a 4-5 percent tax increase for 2011. I would vote against this and solve the $650,000 deficit from within the existing budget. For instance, postpone any proposed equipment purchases fand any proposed remodeling such as the LEC until the economy improves. This would indicate that the board understands the taxpayers’ economic situation and is work with them, not against them

Q. After the state of Minnesota reduced funding to the Sentenced to Serve Program, the county began funding it. Do you think the county should continue to do so?
A. This Sentence to Serve Program enables the county to use inmates to perform useful outdoor maintenance work under supervision. I’m told it is paying its way, but I have seen no facts and figures.

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Q. The county board will soon have to determine the future location of the Health and Human Services office. The board could renew the lease at Oak Park Mall, renovate space at the Mower County Government center or build a new home for the offices on the “Robbins Block” Which options would you support and why?
A. Again, due to the poor economy, we cannot afford a new building or major remodeling of the courthouse for Health and Human Services at this time. The only option, in my opinion, is to remain at Oak Park Mall for the existing lease term. Also, in the future, the way Health and Human Services are delivered could be changed to a regionalized system., according to the state. Until this possibility is decided, it would be imprudent to build or remodel. The board’s construction cost estimates are $4 to $8 million or more.

Q. The county board is looking into the possibility of joining forces with Steele and Rice counties to regionally house Mower County’s dispatch services. Would you support this, and why?
A. I think that this regionalization of some services such as dispatch services is a coming trend. I understand that we have 13 employees that could be affected in some way, and I’m concerned. However, if the safety of Mower County residents is not compromised and the savings is substantial, I would support this.

Q. What skills do you have that you think are unique and make you stand out as a candidate?
A. I’m a lifeling Mower County resident. I am a federall certified real estate appraiser, and I’ve owned Reinartz Appraisals for the past 32 years. My wife, Linda, works with me in our business. We have four grown children and eight grandchildren. I am very familiar with Mower County and county government functions. I meet and interact with people daily in my business. My familiarity with our county and my business experience have both prepared me for this position. People can call me with their concerns, and will do all I can to help them.

Q. What other issue or issues are important to you as a candidate, and what policies do you favor in these areas?
A. I would promote a better relationship between the county board and the Austin City Council. It is in the MOwer County taxpayers’ best interest for these two governming bodies to cooperate in any area that saves money for taxpayers. In following county-city relations over the years, there have been too man turf battles, the latest being the jail and justice center issue.