Jankovsky and Stepp on some other issues
The 2018 Glenwood Springs Issues and Answers Forum on Wednesday heard from numerous candidates running for different local offices, including incumbent Republican Tom Jankovsky, seeking his third term as Garfield County commissioner, and his challenger, Democrat Paula Stepp.
Before both candidates debate again in Rifle this Thursday, the following summarizes where Jankovsky and Stepp stood on some of the key issues addressed at the Glenwood Springs forum.
endorsing or opposing ballot issues
Stepp: “I think it depends on the issue, but I do think you do have to step forward and make a decision for the county.”
Jankovsky: “In eight years I have been a commissioner we have never really supported an initiative, a state initiative or ballot issue, until this past year and that has been Proposition 112.”
Jankovsky: “Lobbying is important; talking to our congressmen and our senators is important. Letting them know that we have a population that is 30 percent Latino, and a lot of those do not have their papers, and that it is important to work on their behalf.”
Stepp: “What we need to do is encourage our state and federal legislatures to move on this. We have taken too long and there are too many people waffling and hiding and afraid to move forward, so we need to do something different than what we are doing right now.”
Diversifying Garfield County’s economy
Stepp: “The first thing we do is move much faster on broadband. Internet access is as important to us in this century as electricity was in the last century. … One of the first things that we should do … is set up a micro-loan program.”
Jankovsky: “Good broadband for our entire county, and another is the Jordan Cove LNG Export Terminal, which will allow us better markets for our natural gas.”
Jankovsky: “It will hurt people, it will hurt children, it will hurt teachers in our county. This is a really big deal, and my opponent sits on the fence on this.”
Stepp: “I look at it as water, health, safety, environment, but I also look at it as jobs, wealth, public service and our economy. I sit in the middle of that and I weigh both sides. I think the oil and gas industry is Colorado’s golden calf. I think it promises so much, but it really has an uncertain future.”
Protecting tourism amid industry pressures
Stepp: “Tourism and the outdoors have been a basis for our communities for so many years, and we really need to take care of that as we look at our future.”
Jankovsky: “I would not do anything that would hurt tourism or an economy that has been here for 125 years.”
high cost of health care
Jankovsky: “What we are doing is we are lobbying our representatives such as Bob Rankin, and we are trying to help them push through things such as reinsurance.”
Stepp: “Health care, you feel like it all comes down from the top whether it is from the federal government or the state government, and I think we need to work from the bottom up.”
Rifle’s Election Forum will take place at Rifle City Hall (200 Railroad Ave.) from 6 – 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18.
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Former Carbondale trustee Katrina Byars said she wants to bring a voice of environmental sustainability to the commission, and believes her opponent has served long enough.