I've known Perry Dozier my entire life and believe he has the right financial tools to help oversee the county's $55 million budget. The agriculture economy is very cyclical and planning for the future is critical for sustaining your business.
My background in agriculture and commercial banking, 23 years, allow me to have an understanding of budgetary needs. Perry has held strong at keeping the county's current expense reserves at 25 percent, which is used for unexpected emergencies.
For example, if one case of tuberculosis happens in Walla Walla County, that would cost the county approximately $1 million.
If the county has a first-degree murder trial the expense would be similar at around $1 million.
Recently the thunderstorm in July cost the road department approximately $1 million to repair. If the reserve funds are not available for these unexpected situations, the county will be broke. Using reserves to fund ongoing expenses will only patch a hole in the budget until the money runs out.
His opponent wants to see the reserves dropped to 10 percent. Theoretically if the county is not able to replace these reserves with new revenues, eventually there will be no money left to operate the county -- especially when emergency situations or needs arise unexpectedly. Perry has stated numerous times the reserves are serving their purpose.
This year alone the county will spend $500,000 for an energy upgrade that will save energy costs in the future. Equipment repair and replacement provides county vehicles in a program to allow modernizing a fleet. Commissioners will use a reserve fund to help front-load the initial replacement cost for those just entering the program. This program is used by those who choose to use it within the county. This vision keeps our county financially solvent.
Let's keep Walla Walla County as one of the top financially strong counties in the state and re-elect Perry Dozier for another term as county commissioner.