UPDATE: If you missed the April 19 political forum at TBCC, or the live stream of the event as it happened, here's the recorded forum: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/21975614

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As a part of the Headlight Herald’s election coverage, we conducted Q&A video interviews with candidates for both County Commissioner seats.

All candidates were given a chance to make opening and closing remarks and were asked six questions about issues affecting Tillamook County. The video interviews are available online, with minimal editing lower on this page.

The questions included:

What is your position on funding for the library? How do you think the county should be addressing issues with roads? What is your stance on issues that affect ocean use off Tillamook County’s shores? What is important to you surrounding land use issues, including logging of state forests, farmland use, estuary and watershed health, etc.? What is your stance on the county’s efforts to reduce flooding in the Tillamook Basin? How do you think the county budget should be managed?

Bill Baertlein

View Part 2 and Part 3.

David Downs

View Part 2.

Jill Williams

John Coopersmith

Lisa Phipps

Mark Labhart

Steve Forster

View Part 2 and Part 3.

Tom Donohue

Valerie Folkema

(40) comments

hebocow
hebocow

Not with goat's milk.

cheeseman
cheeseman

The cream always rises to the top!

TROSE
TROSE

Not me! I read in print from the public forum that someone else once used the Taj Mahal in reference to the library and this was back when it was being built.

hebocow
hebocow

10 4. Taj Mahal was the clue.

coaststeve
coaststeve

trose/ddy/cheeseman/whatever the otherone was. You almost had me on this one. You need to change your writing style for each different person you post as.

TROSE
TROSE

coaststeve, again, points deserved and well taken. The Port (Tillamook) has done the best under circumstance to bring in business. I, as a kid, in the 60's visited this monumental historic place in our county. (Tillamook Veneer) You cannot blame the messenger, aka, Mr Baertlein. When the FEMA dollars after the storm of 07, shut down our rail road... that was huge. When a brewery, wanted to put in a pub, prior to thinking on who is going to pay for water and sewer, and was not researched, I voted or thought NO WAY !. I even posted a comment, cuz I personally know we all need toilets and fresh water if we want to open business.

I feel the same way too about the library. Ignore or not to ignore? How can you ignore the Taj Mahal next to Safeway store, when so many of us remember the struggles of the old days. Our new library is a beautiful building but gives the wrong impression to those who are less fortunate, to understand the struggles some of us remember. I do remember the library with the flat roof, with a lot of books, but still such a welcoming sight. Now it looks, well,,, to much like a class act business, that the rich, can and does... welcome the poor. Oh must say, advertising FREE! In the old days, we all blended and we shared what we had. No more. I am going to vote for someone who understands those "Old Days". Do believe Mr Baertlein, a 3rd generation, gets it!

As far as the YMCA ? I support the Y. For many reasons. In fact, vs the library, I do believe the Y does bring more interaction . Because of the Y, my kids learned to swim. To this day, I don't swim , but tried. I also lost many family and friends to drowning so do believe, the YMCA, vs dollars spent on the library, brings better results of survival, especially those who live on the OR Coast. I grew up on "Little house on the Prairie Days" where a library was luxury but we also knew books were a dime a dozen and reading was yes important for survival ,but so was swimming.

coaststeve
coaststeve

I have always thought that the port was THE most mismanaged piece of property in this county. The potential has been there but the port board has run off more business then they have attracted. The Y, in my own opinion, is also a non entity. If one didn't drive by it on occasion one wouldn't know that it even existed. If Mr. Baertlein has other talents, now would be the time to share them..

TROSE
TROSE

Good points taken coaststeve and agree with some comments, however please open to page 13 of HH of last weeks paper. Unlike your statement below, Mr Baertlein HAS PROFESSED TO OTHER TALENTS, such as ... 1.) Port of Tillamook Bay Warehouse Buildings. 2.) Kilchis Point Interpretive Trail. 3.) YMCA Gym and Indoor Running Track. 4.) Garibaldi Museum. 5. ) New Port Digester @ Port of Tillamook Bay 6.) New Truck Scales @ Port of Tillamook Bay.

I am sure Mr Baertlein has more talents, but he never has been one to boast or brag.

coaststeve
coaststeve

The flip flop on the library is a concern. My biggest problem is that I do not like "one trick pony" candidates. Beartein claims to be a financial wizard. That is the job of the county treasurer. He has professed to no other talents. Donohue wants to protect the ocean against everything but fishing and seems to follow a pretty strict teaparty script. Forster seems to think that he and Josi and Labhart are going to walk under rainbows and solve all of the problems. Coopersmith just wants to be a commissioner. He's not sure why. He just likes the sound of it. Folkema is another my only issue is the ocean so that I can continue to make money off of it type of candidate. Wiliams was the most painful to listen to. Made Chuck Hurliman sound like a Rhodes scholar. Seems to have zero idea about the separation of Federal/State/County government and obviously had no idea how library funding worked. As far as the guy running against Labhart, almost as painful as the Williams interview...Labhart will pick up at least 80% of votes cast. Baertlein and Phipps may be close enough for a run-off.

TROSE
TROSE

What Mr. Baertlein was stating in the paper was something he knows best. MATH ! Perhaps it was wrong in his last line in stating his yes or no vote, and maybe leave it to the voters. He does know something about budgets, and his time and efforts to improve our county is already a given. The video was made prior to the paper. This being tax day, and those of us who understand the deadline FOR TAX DAY, and understand the deadline for newspapers, there are sometimes statements made that should have been read and read again for proof reading. I am proud of Mr Baertlein for standing his ground as he has done for his clients for 30 years. I do believe many of his clients and those who work for his clients will be in full support of Mr Baertlein. We need someone who understands MATH, knows our county's history, and all the struggle's, of those who work in timber, fishing, farming and retail, and all they go through, sometimes on a daily basis.


rocky69
rocky69

TROSE "Wishy Washy" are two perfect words to describe Bill Baertlein, first in the HH video he supports the Library fund then a few weeks later he say's that he does not support the Library. Now that is Wishy Washy

MrNetarts
MrNetarts

How is she "wishy washy" like you're saying? Too liberal? Yes, all liberals and environmentalists are against sustainable job creation in Tillamook County. What did conservative county commissioners like the outgoing Chuck Hurliman and Jerry Dove do for this county as far as job creation or getting more money injected into the local economy? Seems like since they have been in office, it's been a real decline on so many levels. And they both happen to be on a personal crusade to take Phipps down.

It is comments like TROSE's that concern me. This is not a high school election where you just pick your friends. Tell me something positive that either Jerry Dove or Chuck Hurliman have done for this county and then I might consider voting for a conservative. This election is supposed to be non-partisan anyways.

TROSE
TROSE

Phipps is too wishy washy and too liberal. And those looking for employment, do not need an environmentalist on the panel.

MrNetarts
MrNetarts

Bill Baertlein needs to figure out where he is on the issues before I'd even consider voting for someone like him. You can't do an interview with the Headlight-Herald and then write a letter to the editor a week later with a completely different stance on an issue. No one likes a flip-flopper, and that's what he is. He'll say whatever's convenient at the time it seems.

rocky69
rocky69

MrNetarts I really feel that it is our responsability as voters to get out and talk to as many folks in the community as we can to help inform the voters how important this job is to the future of our Beautiful County. The voters must be told how important the qualifications and the expereince is to be a good County Commissioner. I also belive that MR Josi and MR Labhart would be excited to work with a canidate (Phipps)that they could trust to help with the major issues facing our County

TROSE
TROSE

I believe that Bill Baertlein is the most qualified. He is getting my vote! We need jobs in our county and believe Bill Baertlein, as a CPA, understands the struggles his clients have been through, in the last 30 years.

MrNetarts
MrNetarts

I am just worried that Tillamook County will elect a dog groomer with no higher education or any real qualifications to even justify running for office over someone like Phipps.

rocky69
rocky69

Coast Steve You are so right on all accounts. Tillamook County can not afford to elect a canidate that does not have the experience's and partnerships needed to get the county moving in the right direction. MR Josi and MR Labhart do not need to spend there time training someone, they need a commissioner that can hit the ground running the first day. Lisa aready has the experience working with both commissioners on many tough issues.

coaststeve
coaststeve

Unfortunately the most qualified don't always win. I still am amazed that this county survived Hurliman and Dove as county commissioners. Phipps is the most qualified for the office.

rocky69
rocky69

Just got back from Cloverdale forum. Lisa Phipps was by far the most qualified candidate running for position 1. She has my vote on May15th.

TROSE
TROSE

Same thoughts coaststeve. Either silence is Golden... OR ? Scary !

coaststeve
coaststeve

Pretty shocked that this did not generate more conversation on here..

hebocow
hebocow

Lonesome? Turn up the sound to the max on each of the nine candidates . . . and light each of them up until they have filled your room with chatter like a family reunion at a Thanksgiving dinner. Kids will love this.

coaststeve
coaststeve

A couple of those were almost painful to watch. Seems like if you were going to run for office you would educate yourself about the issues..

Jerry
Jerry

Thank you HH, I thought it was great. It is going to take some soul searching for some folks to decide how to vote. The more info that gets out the better.

Point taken. It's quite a small staff that puts this product out. The issue didn't occur to the three people who saw the front page. Lots of things are going through your mind on deadline - did we spell check, is that story cut off, where's the ad on page 3, what's the date again, did you double check the tax rate quoted on the library bond, etc. We missed that. My fault.

Obeachwalker
Obeachwalker

I'm all for journalistic innovation but if your artistic graphic contains actual photos of actual candidates you need to include identifications somewhere in the actual paper...not require readers to treasure hunt via your online videos. This attempt was not reader friendly. It's just basic journalism 101 to include I.D.s!

coaststeve
coaststeve

thanks!!

I can ask Mr. Baertlein about his position. Frankly, I didn't realize it was quite that different. He had asked to submit a letter to "clarify" his position in the video, which is the only reason I remembered the letter came after the video taping. Only now, after seeing Anthony's final video, do I see that it was a complete change in course rather than a clarification. So I appreciate you bringing that up. We will look into this issue. It's not the first time we've gotten a story lead from the website comments. Thanks.

coaststeve
coaststeve

Then a simple clarification posted after the on line interview saying that Mr Baertlein has since changed his position would have been nice. The paper has declared this a hotly contested battle and in my humble opinion should make sure that all of the info is out there, including known changes in the "campaign strategy."

coaststeve
coaststeve

A good test of Mr. Baertleins ethics. One would hope the he would write another letter to the editor explaining the change of mind and clarifying that he is indeed in favor of a library closure.

It took us several weeks to schedule all the interviews, plus a week to edit. We wanted to release them all at the same time for fairness. We didn't anticipate any significant campaign strategy changes in a few weeks. I just wanted to correct your comment about Mr. Baertlein - the letter came out after the interview.

The film strip image on the front page was meant to serve as a graphic element only. I'm sorry we did not identify the candidates in the photos. We hoped the article would draw people to the online videos.

Quite a lot of work and time went into this project, which I believe is a first of its scope for Tillamook County. I hope it provides some deeper insight about the candidates.  

Obeachwalker
Obeachwalker

Why in the cow-loving world would you run a lead article on candidates, run their photos on page-one, and not -- in captions under the photos, in the jump, or elsewhere in the print edition of the entire paper -- identify the photos by name? Even as a puzzle, it doesn't work for readers to try to match the photos with the thumbnail interviews in the order that they appear. For instance, Lisa Phipps' photo is the fifth in the "film strip" but fourth in the story. Please!.

coaststeve
coaststeve

A bit misleading. Hope you put that in the print edition if you haven't already..

Just for clarification, these video interviews were conducted several weeks ago, prior to Mr. Baertlein's letter. It took us a while to edit them.

coaststeve
coaststeve

It will be a very tight race between Phipps and Baertlein. Glad to see Baertlein decide to recant his previous letter to the editor and come out in support of the library..That will pick him up some needed votes..

rosechild
rosechild

And Bill Baertlein also has a lot of government experience, as shown in today's paper. I have known Bill Baertlein many years , and knew of some of his achievements, but not all, and I am very impressed. Especially between his time as CPA and being such a wonderful devoted family man. Bill Baertlein is not one to boast or brag and quite a modest man, therefore I will boast and brag. Vote Bill Baertlein !

rosechild
rosechild

Yes, HH for putting the interviews online. With 8 candidates, it will be challenging for some, especially for those who are native to the county and know so many on a personal level.

Bill Baertlein, as a CPA, has followed for years, the accounting of his clients, during both the worst and best of times. Those clients are in the timber, fishing, farming, construction, retail and tourist business and those individually who work for these businesses. Our county needs someone to run our county as a business, focusing on the projection of tomorrow, as well as the needs of today.

boxer
boxer

Thank you for putting the interview online. It is very informative and important for voter to learn about each candidate to make an inform decision instead of whose name sound familiar.

Lisa Philip has a lot of government experience.

mooreons
mooreons

Thank you, H-H, for putting these video streams on your web page. The candidates did a good, detailed job of adddressing the major issues of our county. Thank you, candidates, for being a part of this interview. The winners will be sacrificing a majority of their time while in office trying to represent the people of Tillamook County. Like most of their predecessors, they will hopefully be respected when they finally leave this position.

P.S. After listening to your favorite candidate, or listening to the candidates that you are questioning their intentions, try listening to all of the interviews at once. Just a way of clearing your head with some good comic relief...lots of talk and political promises, with little or nothing understood by us voters.

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