Bill Thompson declares himself Democrat candidate for District 3 Commissioner seat
William H. Thompson, Jr., or Bill as he is known locally, has thrown his hat into the ring for District 3 County Commissioner against Republican incumbent Kristin Manguso. Surprising for some, he will be on the Democratic ballot as a write-in.
Choosing the Democrat Party
“It will be a tough race to beat an incumbent,” said Thompson. He will be unopposed in the primary election in June on the Democratic ticket and only needs one write-in vote. He will formally face Commissioner Manguso in the November election.
“When I made the decision to run for county commissioner, changing the party was one of my options to get into the race… It was too late for the general caucus and the assembly… and public service as an elected official is competitive,” explains Thompson of his switch to the Democrat Party.
He further explained, “The critical issues I believe in are not specific to party lines. I want to leave politics out of this. I don’t want to get too conservative or too liberal. I understand my job in public service is to represent the citizens of Grand County.”
He believes the political climate has changed in Grand County and notes there are more independent voters than those tied to a single party.
“I want to give the people a choice in November,” Thompson said. “The time is right.”
Addressing the issues
“I have lived in Grand County my whole life. I have been a rancher. I have been a Water Commissioner on the west end of Grand County for almost 40 years taking care of Districts 36, 50, 51 and 53. I truly believe water is the single most important resource this county has, and based on my experience, I feel it is the right time for me to be a leader in Grand County.”
“I have a deep respect for the citizens of Grand County and the employees of Grand County, and I am willing to listen to them. I just want to have a positive effect on all the issues that come forward in Grand County,” said Thompson.
Thompson wants Grand County employees to feel appreciated and stressed there are already good employees in place at the county.
He outlines critical issues facing the county as: water, transportation, and technology.
Thompson believes water is the most significant issue facing Grand County and fears what years of drought could cause. He questions, “What would the county look like with three years of no water?”
He believes agricultural sustainability and environmental resiliency in water must be protected.
“All of the negotiations the county has done over the last 10 and 15 years for the Colorado River Cooperative Agreement and the Windy Gap Intergovernmental Agreements and the 1041 process need to be protected. We need to protect these assets we have fought so hard to get,” Thompson said of the county’s water assets valued at approximately $160 million.
He continued, “$20 million dollars comes into the county on fishing alone, not even counting rafting. The whole citizenry of the county needs to capitalize on recreational income that water provides.”
Thompson explained this could impact lodging taxes and stressed good infrastructure and roads were needed to enjoy recreational experiences.
In terms of transportation, Thompson said, “We have infrastructure and roads … and we need to continue to improve them.” He even suggested alternative options such as light rail or tunnels to relieve the pressure on the I-70 corridor.
For his last priority, he followed up. “We need to push a little harder for broadband,” suggesting technology needs to be updated more quickly. He also advocates for better cell phone coverage.
General Personal Information
Thompson is 67 years old, and his two children are grown. He, and his wife Wendy, are both graduates of West Grand and continued their college education at the Colorado State University (CSU). Thompson has a degree in Forestry and Natural Resources. Their daughter followed the family tradition and graduated from CSU and is now a veterinarian in her own practice. Their son attended the Colorado School of Mines and is a metallurgical engineer. Thompson has four grandchildren.
He has lived in Kremmling since the 1950s and lives along the Colorado River south of town along Highway 9 where his family ranched. Recently Thompson sold most of his livestock but continues to grow hay.
He plans to visit people throughout the county and participate in community parades and events.
“You have to be available to the public and get back to those who contact you,” Thompson concluded.
Thompson can be contacted at 970-485-0479 and his email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Martin Woros for Clerk and Recorder
Martin Woros, a resident of Hot Sulphur Springs for 22 years, is running on the Democratic ticket for county clerk and recorder. He brings many years of experience working in technology, both in the private and public sectors, and hopes to bring that know how to the office of clerk and recorder. “This office touches your life in many ways: vehicle registration, driver’s license, learners permits, marriage licenses, birth certificates, public documents, meeting minutes, voter registration, election results, polling locations, and mailed ballots,” says Woros. “I commit to be your advocate and do all in my power to make your experience with the office of Clerk and Recorder as beneficial and dignified as possible.” Woros hopes his wealth of experience in technology can be used to improve the Clerk’s web pages, focusing on online interactive services, and making recorded documents viewable online.
Unaffiliated voters can now vote in primary
The latest voter registration stats show that Grand County has 4,059 active unaffiliated voters, close behind Republicans who have the largest block.
Coloradans in 2016 approved Proposition 108, which allows unaffiliated voters for the first time to automatically participate in primary elections. Before, they had to first affiliate with one party or another.
Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, with the blessing of the legislature, has launched a campaign to let unaffiliated voters know that they can participate and, if they want, go online and choose whether they want to vote a Democratic ballot or a Republican ballot at (https://www.sos.state.co.us/pubs/ elections/chooseU/choiceHappens.html.)
The UChooseCO campaign is aimed at informing unaffiliated voters. If voters don’t elect an affiliation they might receive two ballots – but they can’t mark both. If they vote both the Democratic ballot and the Republican ballot, neither ballot will count. In other words, don’t spoil it, pick one.
Proposition 108 does not change anything for Republican and Democratic voters, who will still receive a primary ballot with their party’s candidates. As always in November, all voters, regardless of affiliation, can vote for any candidate. And two years from now, unaffiliated voters can choose which ballot they want to vote – they don’t have to select the party they picked this year.
Democrat State Assembly Results
Bolded candidates have qualified for the Democratic primary ballot.
Lesley Smith: 3,229 votes (100.00%)
Bernard Douthit: 1,074 votes (31.50%)
Charles Scheibe: 557
Dave Young: 1,778 votes (52.16%)
Secretary of State
Jena Griswold: 3,352 votes (98.44%)
Phillip Villard: 53 votes (1.56%)
Amy Padden: 360 votes (10.54%)*
Joe Salazar: 1,249 votes (36.58%)
Phil Weiser: 1,805 votes (52.87%)
*Amy Padden can qualify for the ballot if the Secretary of State determines that she has collected the requisite number of valid signatures.
Cary Kennedy: 2,101 votes (61.65%)
Jared Polis: 1,120 votes (32.86%)
Erik Underwood: 187 votes (5.49%)
NOTE: These are not all of the candidates who are running for these particular offices. Some candidates have chosen to qualify for the ballot by submitting petition signatures instead of going through the caucus-assembly process.