Mt. Vernon Register-News

March 6, 2014

Only one contested race for Board

By TESA GLASS tesa.glass@register-news.com
The Register-News

---- — Editor’s Note:

This is the third profile of candidates running in contested races in Jefferson County for the March 18 Primary Election. Today, Republican candidates for Jefferson County Board District 8 are highlighted.

MT. VERNON — Two Republicans are competing for a seat on the County Board for District 8.

The district covers Moores Prairie Township, Pendleton Township and the eastern half of Webber Township.

The two candidates who will appear on the March 18 primary ballot are Clifford E. Lindemann and Michael R. Bullard.

Lindemann said he is running for the position to represent the residents of Jefferson County as well as those who serve us by working for the county on a daily basis.

“We have many tough decisions facing our county and I feel it is important to have a voice that will get and give factual information on behalf of all our residents,” Lindemann said.

Lindemann and his wife Desra are known locally as partners with other family members in Lane’s Family Concession.

“You might better know me as Cliff and also know my wife, Desra,” Lindemann said. “In this partnership, we travel to many neighboring counties as well as others throughout the State of Illinois. We recognize that our county has so much potential with many wonderful opportunities waiting to be realized.”

Lindemann said he and his family have benefitted from the county for the last 37 years — as an employee of Continental Tire the Americas, formerly General Tire.

“I wish for other families to enjoy the same stability,” Lindemann said. “I am a Republican, but I want the best for all people; especially those that I look forward to serving. I intend to be devoted to the board and will work with the utmost diligence along with all other members. I want to do anything and everything that I can to generate a positive atmosphere surrounding our board.”

Lindemann is a former school board member, and elder in his church and a former firefighter and EMT.

“As your County Board member, I believe in being open and honest,” Lindemann said. “I am fair, independent and will work hard for the taxpayers of Jefferson County.”

Bullard said he is committed to bringing the best interests of all the electorate into every board room decision.

“Today, many local governing bodies, from schools, city and county, are increasing taxes,” Bullard said. “Increasing taxes are an indication of government’s failure to understand our needs and manage our business. They are spending more than they make and are asking us to finance the difference. Some tax increases have good intentions, but nearly all demonstrate a lack of consideration and planning for the needs of the voters as well as very poor business practices. These boards act as though we are cash cows with deep pockets and demonstrate a ‘tax-o-matic’ government, blindly raising our cost of living. This takes away from our lives and families increasing hardships in many homes. Since our needs are not considered, we have become the forgotten half of Jefferson County.”

Bullard said continuing to tax is not acceptable.

“With 20 percent of the residents of Jefferson County at or below the poverty level, and the 30 percent of residents above that live from paycheck to paycheck, this taxing trend is not acceptable,” Bullard said. “Today, our communities have too many people sacrificing the basic essentials of life, medicine, utilities, food, clothing, etc., just to survive. I find this to be a human tragedy and completely unacceptable. Swept under the carpet, it is like these people do not exist and they become part of the forgotten half of Jefferson County Clearly, when boards discuss tax increases, when they plant heir growth, finances and future, they have no choice but to consider the impact of their actions on the entire electorate.

“I am committed to bring the best interest of all the electorate into every board room decision,” Bullard continued. “I will never accept the current tax and spend, ‘tax-o-matic’ trend we all see today.”

Bullard served 35 years on the village board of Bluford, 10 years on the Jefferson County American Red Cross board of directors and served 20 years on the GenFed Credit Union Board of Directors.

“Past boards have always been entrusted to take care of our courthouse,” Bullard said. “This was part of their job, and they failed. Now, they are asking us to sacrifice again and vote for a second increase in taxes — this time to pay for repairs they failed to make in our courthouse. Despite numerous public requests, they have refused to consider paying for repairs with budget adjustments. When elected, I will not support this new tax. I will only support courthouse repairs with well planned adjustments to the county’s financial budget.”

Bullard said he believes the county board should meet in other communities of Jefferson County at least four times each year.

“County government is not some ‘ivory tower’ we visit,” Bullard said. “The county government needs to visit the place they represent and meet the people who elected them. They need to travel the roads, see the schools, the businesses and homes. There should never be a forgotten half in Jefferson County. As your county board member, I will push to have these meetings in our community.”

Bullard also said cutting the number of police officers when there are budget cuts is a tactic which threatens public safety and wastes money.

“The safety of citizens of Jefferson County cannot be sacrificed and as residents of the forgotten half, we know all too well how that feels,” Bullard said. “As your county board member, I would never support any reduction in emergency personnel without proof safety is never compromised and taxpayer money would be saved.”