Five county officials seeking re-election
Friday, January 03, 2014 7:20 AM
The five county elected officials with terms expiring at the end of the year all want to continue serving.
Winneshiek County supervisors Dennis Karlsbroten and Floyd Ashbacher, Treasurer Wayne Walter, County Attorney Andy Van Der Maaten and Recorder Teresa Bockman told Decorah Newspapers they will seek re-election this fall.
County officials serve four-year terms, however, Karlsbroten and Ashbacher will be up for re-election after completing two-year terms. New supervisor districts were drawn after the 2010 census, resulting in all five supervisor seats up for election in 2012. Karlsbroten, who serves District 1, and Ashbacher, who represents District 2, were elected to two-year terms in order to maintain staggered supervisor terms.
Karlsbroten wants to stay in office to finish what he's started.
"I'm not done yet with what I set out to accomplish," he said. "(Supervisor) Dean Thompson and I put a lot of time into studying frac-sand (mining) and we plan to continue that work."
Frac sand, desirable for its use in natural gas extraction, has been identified in Northeast Iowa, and Winneshiek County supervisors voted in June to impose an 18-month moratorium on the mining of frac sand here.
Karlsbroten commented he's been impressed with the county employees he's dealt with and the other supervisors he serves with.
"I'm very pleased with the Board members I'm working with. I enjoy them all. I think we've done some good things this past year."
Ashbacher also wants to complete what he's been involved with as a supervisor
"We still have a lot of unfinished things I'd like to see carried through. Frac sand (issue) is still pending. There is a lot of work to be done yet," he said.
"I've enjoyed working in this position ... working with the people at the Courthouse and the public. I've worked with the public for years and that hasn't changed much," said Ashbacher, a former Winneshiek County sheriff.
Walter is completing his 30th year as treasurer.
"Working in the county treasurer's office is really rewarding for me. I've enjoyed the work I do with the public for the county and enjoy all the people I work with. It's given me opportunities to be involved in local government in ways that few people get to experience," he said.
Walter has served on the Iowa State Association of Counties Board of Directors, and is a member of the investment committee for the Iowa Public Employees Retirement System. He also co-chairs a committee for the mental health system that provides electronic transfer of data for developmentally disabled residents in facilities around the state, and meets with the director of the Department of Transportation monthly to provide county perspective on driver's license and motor vehicle issues.
"It's a rewarding experience for me to work in county government and I don't feel like retiring. My goal is to complete another four-year term."
Bockman said she is seeking re-election because she has accomplished what voters elected her to do. She is completing her first, four-year term as recorder.
"All reports are filed in a timely basis and the office is running smoothly," she said.
After three years in office, Bockman said she still has things to learn.
"We are currently in the middle of getting more of our records out to Iowa Land Records (website). I would like to be here when most of our records are uploaded to Iowa Land Records. It is a huge undertaking and my office is doing an amazing job with it," Bockman said.
"I enjoy working for and with the voters of Winneshiek County."
Van Der Maaten said he has enjoyed representing the citizens of Winneshiek County and serving their needs. He said his office has a good relationship with law enforcement.
"We've worked well together in terms of providing good service on criminal and juvenile cases and continue to provide timely service and good representation to the elected officials of Winneshiek County. I'm looking forward to hopefully having the opportunity to continue that," he said.
The Winneshiek County Auditor's office will be releasing information about filing nomination papers for county offices in the near future. Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 4.