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NAME: Josh Barker
CANDIDATE FOR: Boone County Commission
CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: Facebook: Josh Barker for Boone County Commission
HOME CITY: Big Ugly
HOME COUNTY: Boone
EDUCATION: Associate's Degree
CURRENT OFFICE OR OCCUPATION: Legislative Liason to the state auditor
OTHER WORK HISTORY: Former town manager of Danville, WV; Former President of Boone County Ambulance Authority, Department of Highways in Boone County, Former member of the House of Delegates
CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS: Boone County Republican Executive Committee, Former member of Rotary Club, Former member of Kiwanis
FAMILY: wife, Jill Barker; children, Katy and Lilly Barker
PERSONAL STATEMENT: Since childhood, I have had a strong interest in being involved in my community and helping others. Beginning with my late father, Raamie Barker, and his work in state and local government, I have learned the importance of civic responsibility. I truly care about Boone County and want to see it be the best that it can be. I see so much potential in its' people and resources. But we need a strong leadership with experience and knowledge in government operations to know how to get things done! That is why I am running for county commission.
1. How would you implement better county planning?
Currently, the work of the commission is done with little to no input from our citizens. We need to open the doors and invite our people to have a voice. Absolute transparency!! As your commissioner, I would urge collaboration with all stakeholders in building a strong future for Boone County.
2. How would you encourage economic development in the county?
I would promote a process of strategic planning for infrastructure investments to spark our economy. We could draw on collaborative partnerships developed across the government and nonprofit organizations to provide opportunities and guidance for local initiatives. Also, this would include building a marketing campaign to draw people into our community.
3. What more needs to be done about dilapidated housing in the county?
The first step would be to have the county to do the work to take possession of these properties. Once these houses are acquired, then we need to make connections with local organizations and private individuals who have a desire to develop these properties.
4. What are the three most pressing problems the county faces?
I believe the three issues that are the most important to address would be a lack of quality jobs, a deficiency in critical infrastructure, and a real fear of change. If we continue to do the same things we have always done, we will continue to have the same problems we have always had.
5. What needs to be done about litter control in the county?
I want to see us develop and implement a simple system that receives complaints from the community, assigns an investigative officer, and levy’s fines that will be used to pay for clean up of the litter. I think a system like this would go a long way in making Boone County a cleaner place to live.
6. How do you plan on continuing to maintain a balanced budget?
I believe that maintaining a budget is all about cutting the fat, utilizing community involvement to either build revenue or cut costs of county properties , and prioritizing investments that provide legitimate turn around.