Kids Voing: 2 candidates vie for place on County Commission
By Austin Moree
Two candidates: Steve Acquafresca and Stephen Saint.
Two parties: Republican and Libertarian.
Only one will assume the title of Mesa County commissioner in District 2 after the Nov. 2 midterm election.
District 2 covers the north central part of the county, including much of Grand Junction.
A county commissioner is a member of the county board, which is responsible for overseeing the collection and disbursement of funds and other affairs of the county. This includes establishing tax rates, deciding how to spend taxpayer money and making and passing new laws.
Both of the commissioner candidates said they are knowledgeable about county issues, although they see solutions and tasks differently.
Incumbent Acquafresca is a businessman involved in farming and orchard growing. He said he understands business and that it is a key factor to being a successful county commissioner.
He wants to direct a substantial portion of the county’s budget to infrastructure investment such as roads, bridges and sewers. He said he wants to continue to foster efficient, transparent and accountable government, and create an environment in which citizens have opportunities.
Acquafresca said he believes elected officials need to be engaged with enterprise and stay connected with the community. High-quality education is a top priority for Acquafresca, he said.
Saint said he is an average working person who understands what the community goes through because he works and lives in it.
As a commissioner, he said he would focus on financial efficiency and evaluate government programs to determine the need for them. He said he would also work to promote small business.
Saint said he believes that at least one, if not all three, Mesa County commissioners should be a part of the Mesa County Valley District 51 Board of Education to have a better say-so and an understanding of the schools and funding issues.
He said he believes that the community should be more involved with the political process.
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Austin Moree is a senior at Palisade High School and is reporting on election issues for The Daily Sentinel in conjunction with Kids Voting of Mesa County.