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Meet the Candidates: Greg Ferguson - Supervisors District 5
The Yuma Sun is spotlighting the candidates ahead of the Nov. 6 general election. Greg Ferguson, Gary Wright, David Lerma and Mike Caltabiano are the candidates running for Yuma County Board of Supervisors District 5. Caltabiano declined to fill it the questionnaire. Check out past editions of Meet the Candidates online at www.YumaSun.com/Elections.
: Name: Greg Ferguson
Office running for: Yuma County Board of Supervisors District 5
Family: Married to Ana 31 years, son Eric, his wife Heather and two grandsons, daughter Nikki deceased
Education: BA Northern Arizona University-Yuma, AA Arizona Western College, both Environmental Science
Employment: Yuma County Board of Supervisors; retired Marine
To what organizations do you belong? American Legion, Marine Corps League, Yuma Valley Rod and Gun Club, Trinity United Methodist Church (trustee and usher), Yuma Metropolitan Planning Organization (vice chairman), Greater Yuma Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors and the Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System Board of Trustees (vice chairman).
What in your past experiences helps qualify you for this seat? My history and record on the board of supervisors where I have served as the chairman or vice chairman. I have been recognized statewide as a knowledgeable, ethical and hardworking supervisor. I am proud of my record as a board member and welcome anyone to investigate my record as well as my opponents.
If elected, what is the one issue on which you would focus to improve Yuma's quality of life? How? Improving the local economy: jobs. Continue pursuing employers to relocate to Yuma County and make sure county government does not impede local companies/businesses from growing as that is where most of our new jobs are going to originate. We must continue to keep Yuma County in the forefront in Phoenix as a lot of the decisions are made there and ensure when the Legislature takes action to improve the economic health of Arizona their actions will work in Yuma County as well as Maricopa County. Also, statistics have always demonstrated the better educated you are, the less likely you will be unemployed. This is where close coordination with the local school districts, AWC, NAU, YPIC and the Chamber of Commerce becomes an absolute necessity.
What do you think is the biggest challenge right now facing Yumans, and how would you change it? It is no secret that our biggest challenge is the unemployment rate. We need to change the climate on the national level from one of an “unknown” business and tax future to a climate where people can plan and make decisions that will grow the economy. Once that happens, I think the state Legislature can continue to take the actions they started concerning corporate taxes and other job-creating issues. Then, we at the county and city level are going to have to do everything we can to be business/job friendly. Senseless local squabbles and infighting have to stop. I know we have heard it all before, but that is what it is going to take.
What would you do to make government more accessible? During my tenure on the board, my efforts led to broadcasting our meetings live on television. Also, the county has begun streaming the meetings live on the Internet, have video on demand services where anyone can view previous meetings or agenda items on the Internet, uses Twitter and very recently made all the above available by cell phone. We are one of the most, if not the most, accessible government entities in Arizona. We have received national attention for our efforts to be accessible and transparent, with county staff winning several awards for their efforts. I am the only candidate for District 5 supervisor who is listed in the telephone directory; always have been and always will be. I do more than talk about accessibility, I live it. I am currently, and always have been, a full-time supervisor who is available 24/7.
Who is your personal hero, and why? I have several: great-grandfather for his work ethic and success in life, grandfather for his ability to handle stress and my father for his efforts to provide for his family. They all had one trait that drove them: hard work and not being afraid to tackle any situation.