July 19, 2024

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Washington County’s District 14 voters have four choices in Republican primary

Washington County

Justice of the Peace

District 14

Daniel Hitchcock (R)

Age: 30 

Residency: Winslow for 6 yrs

Occupation: Excellent assurance manager at Dayco Products and solutions

Schooling: Grasp of science degree in operations management from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Political Experience: None

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Nikki Lockett (R)

Age: 48

Residency: Prairie Grove for 15 many years

Occupation: National account supervisor

Education and learning: Bachelor’s diploma in accounting from University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Political Encounter: None

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Gary Ricker

Age: 66

Residency: Greenland spot for 30 a long time

Profession: Retired, Greenland chief of police

Education: Attended Arkansas Tech University in Russellville

Political Encounter: None

FAYETTEVILLE — Voters will pick among 4 candidates in the race for the Republican nomination for the Washington County Quorum Court’s District 14 seat.

Daniel Hitchcock, Nikki Lockett, Gary Ricker and Aaron Wood all filed to run in the party main. If no candidate receives a greater part of the votes in the primary election, a runoff will be held June 21.

The winner of the May 24 primary will confront Democratic Social gathering nominee Dawn Cannon in the November basic election. Early voting starts off Monday.

The Quorum Court is the legislative body of county govt and is composed of 15 members termed justices of the peace, who are elected to two-year terms. Democrats hold four of the seats, and Republicans hold 11.

Each justice of the peace represents a district of around equal inhabitants. Redistricting for justice of the peace seats took area late final calendar year. District 14 contains Greenland, West Fork and Winslow together with significantly of rural southern Washington County.

Washington County justices of the peace are compensated $200 for each meeting for Quorum Court and committee meetings they show up at.

The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette requested just about every prospect the same 3 inquiries by means of email. They were being told their answers would be limited to 300 words apiece and might be edited for clarity.

Wooden did not answer.

Problem: Why did you determine to run for justice of the peace and what makes you the most effective man or woman for the position?

HITCHCOCK: I made a decision to run in an hard work to use my working experience in continuous advancement, root result in investigation and course of action auditing to aid minimize squander and emphasis assets on locations that are tested to need them the most. In conjunction with my professional practical experience, I system on employing my character expertise to talk and build associations to gather the required facts to make the proper conclusions.

LOCKETT: I made a decision to get concerned in politics at the neighborhood stage just after recognizing modify occurs at the neighborhood and condition degree, not automatically at the countrywide level. I grew to become concerned with the Washington County Republican Committee mid-2021 following seeing the comprehensive scale of turmoil our state had advanced into. I resolved I could no extended sit back again not executing anything to aid change the trajectory, for the better, of our wonderful nation. Our stunning nation has supplied wonderful chances for folks like myself, who could make inadequate selections early in daily life, to turn out to be thriving and content with enough really hard work and resolve. If we do not safeguard the rights and freedoms we have been blessed with by God, which have been enshrined in our Structure, then upcoming generations will not have the options of free of charge will, independence, liberty and the pursuit of pleasure like my generation has been blessed to practical experience.

There are quite a few elaborate difficulties we are struggling with as a nation and as a persons. Persons are active elevating households and working to guidance their people, and they may possibly not have time to study to recognize the complexities of the difficulties we confront, problems this sort of as trans-humanism and globalization. I have focused myself to gaining a deep comprehending of the intricate troubles we encounter and want to be a protector for others’ happiness and freedoms. Justice of the peace is a terrific option for me to be concerned in decisions that effects our local community while maintaining the job I like. I am the ideal person for the career since I love our state and our rights, and I want to defend those legal rights.

RICKER: As an energetic police officer, I never thought in functioning for office environment though performing for a governmental company. I made the decision to run for justice of the peace following retiring and talking to pals and acquaintances all-around the county. I have been included in all features of metropolis functions, not just running the Law enforcement Division. I handled grant purposes and compliance, h2o and sewer, parks growth, and finances and finances for the city. This provides me practical experience in govt functions, which carries around to county operations.

Issue: The Quorum Court docket is thinking about an $18 million to $20 million jail growth task. Justices of the peace have mentioned working with American Rescue Strategy dollars to pay out for the task. Do you favor the growth project, and why or why not? Do you favor working with American Rescue System cash to pay for the project, and why or why not?

HITCHCOCK: Becoming a citizen there is restricted visibility about the specifics to justify the expansion of the jail. From my knowing the ARP does not have a certain provision that applies to the normal description of the term jail but there are lots of crucial provisions that would be relevant to growing the facility if the growth includes any products similar to ailment/virus prevention actions, cybersecurity advancements, psychological heath expert services, workforce packages and/or other different procedures. If so, I will favor the use of the ARP funds for the growth challenge. Irrespective, I will favor the enlargement if deemed essential, applying appropriately allocated money and reasonable contracted estimates.

LOCKETT: I would like to see a deeper dive into both equally sides of the dialogue to look at the execs and negatives alongside with the very long-expression money financial investment of the growth and how it will be funded, not just the initial expense of the expansion. Washington County is a single of the speediest rising counties in Arkansas, with population progress 21% from 2010 to 2021. With that sort of progress, unfortunately there will also be an raise in criminal offense, which justifies some style of county jail enlargement to aid the protection of the local community. I feel there is a harmony amongst a jail enlargement alongside with investing in programs that present everyday living skills and function abilities for inmates and significant-hazard folks to reduce recidivism costs and to start with-time arrests.

I believe that there are substantial rewards of the trades, and I consider our neighborhood would reward by acquiring additional trade expertise packages to enable people who have fallen on tough moments or have experienced a challenging upbringing and need to have assistance mastering expertise to be ready to assistance themselves emotionally and monetarily.

In regards to the American Rescue Plan funds funding the jail expansion, I imagine that is a wonderful choice to expanding taxes on already closely taxed people of our local community to fund the jail expansion we also have to have to have an understanding of economic projections of the ongoing charges of the jail expansion and programs on how those people fees would be funded so we do not stop up rising taxes to assist these charges.

RICKER: I do favor the growth of the county jail. As our inhabitants increases, the crime price boosts necessitating a more substantial facility, and, if the American Rescue Strategy revenue can be made use of as a substitute of our nearby taxes, it will be much less of a load on our citizens.

Question: What other regions of county govt are you most intrigued in and what specifically would you like to see the county do in those regions?

HITCHCOCK: I have hardly ever been intrigued in any governing administration parts right up until I turn into additional conscious of what the JP position had to offer you. I’ve retained my head down around political difficulties owing to relying on regional governing administration competency. That reliance has been waning in excess of the very last a long time, so I am going to get started operating at the JP posture to make confident Washington County sees growth. I anticipate my pursuits will develop if offered the possibility.

LOCKETT: I am fascinated in all of the county government workplaces, as they should all work with each other for the very best interests of our local community. They all impression the life of our community in some sort or fashion, no matter if it is our taxes that supply the funding or an individual we know may perhaps be impacted by a support such as the Animal Shelter, the Veteran Services, etcetera. I a short while ago learned some of the complexities of analyzing which streets are created as county roads. The library is critical for social accumulating, educating, studying, spouse and children time, etcetera. All of the places of work have an vital job in our neighborhood.

RICKER: I am extremely included with the Washington County Library system, crisis administration and the upkeep and advancements on our county streets. I am also familiar with federal government funds, which is 1 of the primary capabilities of the Quorum Courtroom. I consider the Quorum Court has a accountability to our taxpayers to be very good stewards of the tax funds and get the most bang for our buck as doable.

  photo  Gary Ricker, prospect for WC JP 14 GOP
 
 
  photo  Daniel Hitchcock, Applicant for JP 14, GOP,