University’s Leavitt Center hosts county commission candidate debate

Iron County Sheriff Mark Gower votes at the 2016 Republican County Convention. Cedar City, Utah, April 16, 2016 | Photo by Tracie Sullivan, St. George / Cedar City News

CEDAR CITY – Candidates running for Iron County Commissioner have an opportunity to face off during a debate Tuesday night in what may be the last chance to get their message out before early voting starts in two weeks.

The Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service is hosting the Iron County Commission Debate Tuesday from 7-8:15 p.m. with a meet-and-greet 30 minutes before at 6:30 p.m. The event will be held at Southern Utah University in the Gilbert Great Hall located in the Hunter Conference Center at 351 W. University Blvd.

Candidates for Commission Seat A include Republican candidate Mike Bleak and Democratic candidate Scott Truman. For commission Seat C, candidate Alma Adams is running on the Republican ticket while Ken Bauer is representing the Constitutional Party and Wayne Hall, the Libertarian Party.

Ballots are scheduled to be sent out to Iron County voters on Oct. 18, with early voting starting a week later on Oct. 25 and running through Nov. 4. Election day is Nov. 8, making the debate and candidate meet-and-greet a timely opportunity for residents to educate themselves on the candidates and issues, said Donna Law, executive director for the Leavitt Center.

The debate is moderated by students who have spent time preparing questions beforehand for the candidates, Law said, questions they hope will be challenging and well-rounded.

“The students are doing research and working together to prepare questions from a variety of sources – electronic, prints, and television – that they feel will provide for a good discussion and aren’t biased toward any one candidate or party,” Law said.

Wayne Hall, who has never run for office before, said this is only the second time he’s had an opportunity to debate in front of voters. Hall said he’s been preparing for Tuesday night although admits, like the other candidates, he has no idea what the moderators may ask.

“It’s hard to prepare for a debate because you don’t know what the questions are, none of us are supposed to have a copy of the questions ahead of time,” Hall said. “But I’ve been getting my campaign literature together to hand out; and I’ve worked on that so I can let voters know who I am and what makes me different from the rest of the candidates because I think that’s important.”

The Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service is an interdisciplinary hub for leadership opportunities, experiential learning, citizenship education, humanitarian service and public policy research. This nonpartisan center works to disseminate political information and spark debate about the ever-changing work of politics and issues that have an impact on the people of Utah and the nation.

The last day to register to vote is Oct. 11 and the last day to request an absentee ballot is Nov. 3. Besides the mail-in ballot, voters can go to the Iron County Courthouse in Parowan, Enoch City Offices, and Cedar City Offices to cast their ballots starting on Oct. 25. Those that want to vote in person will need to bring photo ID and surrender the ballot that was mailed to them.

Voter registration forms are available at the County Clerk’s office in Parowan and at Southern Utah University’s Leavitt Center, Student Center Room 112. November 1 is the last day to register at the County Clerk’s office and online at vote.utah.gov.

More information about registering to vote can be found at ironcounty.net or vote.utah.gov or you may call the Iron County Clerk’s office at 435-477-8340.

Email: tsullivan@stgnews.com

Twitter: @tracie_sullivan

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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