N. Routt hosts candidates

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— Candidates for two county commissioner seats opening this November will have their first chance to discuss issues and give their views at a forum to be held Saturday in North Routt County.

The bipartisan forum, organized by B.J. Vale, is open to the public. County commissioner candidates running for the District 2 seat -- incumbent and Democrat Doug Monger, and Republicans Jeff Fry and Mark Marchus -- will be present.

For the District 1 seat, incumbent Republican Nancy Stahoviak will be present, and Vale said she is hoping Republican Bea Westwater and Libertarian Mike Kien also will attend.

There may be visits from other state candidates, Vale said, including Sen. Jack Taylor, R-Steamboat Springs, and Rep. Al White, R-Winter Park, who are running for another term.

Vale said she has organized similar forums for the past half-dozen or so elections. "We've always tried to do this kind of thing whenever we can," Vale said.

Although Vale is a Republican, she said she likes to keep the forums bipartisan to hear all viewpoints.

"Anyone in the county, bring your questions," Vale said. "The only way you can find out who you want to vote for is to ask them the questions you feel (strongly) about."

The forum begins at 4 p.m. Saturday at the North Routt Fire Station No. 2. It will open with a meeting and greeting period, followed by a potluck dinner, and the debate should begin by 7 p.m.

Each candidate will be given five minutes to speak, and then the floor will be open to questions from the public.

The forum is timely, as there will be contested Republican primary races for both open commissioner seats: Fry versus Marchus, and Stahoviak versus Westwater.

Another series of candidate forums has been scheduled by the Routt County Republicans and will begin next week. The forums are for Republican candidates, Routt County Clerk Kay Weinland said.

There will be one forum July 21 at the Fairview Inn in Steamboat Springs, a second July 27 at Hayden Town Hall, and a third July 28 at the Oak Creek Town Hall.

-- To reach Susan Bacon, call 871-4203

or e-mail sbacon@steamboatpilot.com

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