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Lower Elkhorn NRD board candidates highlighted at Candidate Forum

October 26, 2018 GMT

NORFOLK - With the General Election less than two weeks away candidates all over are trying to do what they can to make that final push to get as many votes as possible.

The Lower Elkhorn Natural Resources District Candidates were highlighted Wednesday night at a Candidate Forum hosted by News Talk WJAG and the Norfolk Daily News.

Joel Hansen, the incumbent for the At Large seat and Dennis Schultz the incumbent for the Subdistrict 6 seat answered a question about ideas to strengthen relationships and shorten “dysfunctionality” on the board.

Hansen said a lot has changed since he came on the board 12 years ago; people raised their hand to talk and there was a dress code.

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“It’s almost disgraceful and shameful what’s happened to the board over the last few years. We have one director that apparently thinks it’s okay to swear during our meetings, we have another one’s spouse in the audience laughing during the meeting. I guess all I can do as myself is be respectful of each other as much as you can and rely on the other party to do the same. I would encourage the public to come to one of our meetings and see what the circus has become because its quite shameful.”

Schultz said the board is young and they’re learning.

“As they get farther and more experienced they’ll come around and understand that there’s not just one problem, but that this is a whole district that’s very diverse and you’re representing your subdistrict. You are also mandated to carry out what the state wants you to do as a board.”

Jill Barr the incumbent for the Subdistrict 2 seat and Kendra Buss, who is seeking the Subdistrict 4 seat answered a question about the nitrate problem in Northeast Nebraska.

Barr said nitrates are a joint issue.

“It’s an issue that needs to be taken hold of very quickly because it can be a very serious issue. I think the NRD needs to help make sure we educate proper nitrogen placement and I think the city needs to make sure its up to date on any kind of systems they can do to help prevent it from getting into the water.”

Buss thinks nitrates are the NRD’s responsibility.

“If we didn’t have local control then the state would have a plan for us. To have that local control and the ability to modify what we do at a local level is very important.”

The General Election is November 6th.