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home : news : news June 28, 2016

11/1/2012 3:00:00 PM
2012 candidate election profiles
Top Row: Bill Roberts, Colleen Lay, Eddie Haskell, Tonya MooreBottom Row: Josh Deck, Tammy Hayes, Jim Phipps
Top Row: Bill Roberts, Colleen Lay, Eddie Haskell, Tonya Moore

Bottom Row: Josh Deck, Tammy Hayes, Jim Phipps
Still time to use Voting Centers
The traveling Voting Centers for the upcoming General Election continue to be open, as the county is now less than one week away from General Election Day, which is this Tuesday, November 6th.

No matter where a person lives in the county, he or she may vote at any of the traveling voting center locations. Switzerland County Clerk Kim Hambrick hopes that this will allow more voters to get to the polls and vote regardless of working hours and time off.

Along with voting center locations, it should also be noted that there is a new voting location in the town of Vevay which will also be open on Election Day: the new Switzerland County Technology Building, located at 708 West Seminary near the 4-H Fairgrounds.

The remaining schedule is as follows:

- The voting center is open at the Florence Firehouse today (Thursday), from 2-7 p.m.

- The voting center will be at the new Switzerland County Technology Building on Seminary Street tomorrow (Friday, November 2nd), from 8 a.m. until noon; and this Saturday, November 3rd, from 8 a.m. until noon. The voting center will also be open this Monday, November 5th from 2-7 p.m.

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On Election Day, Tuesday, November 6th, there will only be one polling place open in the entire county: The new Switzerland County Technology Building will be open for voting from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. that day.

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Anyone having any questions or feedback on the new voting centers can contact the clerk's office at 427-4415; or email those to clerk@switzerlandcountycourthouse.com.


Bill Roberts: Cotton Sch. Bd.

Bill Roberts is seeking reelection to the Switzerland County School Board representing Cotton Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. He is running against Colleen Lay and Ed Haskell.

He resides near East Enterprise with his wife, Virginia. They have a son, Ken, and a daughter-in-law, Kate; a daughter, Gina, and son-in-law, Joey; and he has three grandchildren: Ari, Jon, and Ben.

He holds a bachelor's degree from Purdue University and a master's degree from Indiana University. He is on the board of the Laughery Valley Co-op; the board of Switzer Square; and is a member of the Lions Club, Gideons International, and Vevay Assembly Church.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

I have a bachelor's degree from Purdue University in education and a masters degree from Indiana University in education. I have 35 years of experience as principal, teacher, coach, and athletic director - 30 years in Switzerland County.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

I believe maintaining cash balance. With state cuts, it is becoming increasingly difficult to fund the necessary programs we offer to our students. We must have a solid general fund cash balance in order to continue to offer the services we currently provide. We must keep in mind that the general fund is tax dollars, not boat revenue, so we want to act responsibly both to our school programs and to our tax community as we make decisions with our budget.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

Keep a tight line on the general fund expenses and expenditures. It is important for all of us to contact our state representatives and encourage the state to meet its responsibilities to schools and the children involved.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

I think we have been responsible to use our assets for the benefit of our students while I have served on the board. The schools are complete and upgraded except for the Switzerland County Elementary School, and we are in the process of upgrading it and will have that completed by August of 2013.

I want us to continue to offer the quality of education we are currently offering at one of the three or four lowest tax rates in the state. As new challenges arise, I feel qualified as a school board member to help Switzerland County Schools meet those challenges and offer our students the best school system that Switzerland County can afford to offer.



Colleen Lay: Cotton Sch. Bd.

Colleen Lay is seeking election to the Switzerland County School Board representing Cotton Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. She is running against Ed Haskell and Bill Roberts.

She resides near East Enterprise with her husband, Jamie, with whom she has been married for 15 years. They have two sons, Jordan, age 14; and Ty, age 5..

She is a 1994 graduate of Switzerland County High School; and has completed numerous secondary education courses and trainings, and is currently working to earn her accounting degree. She has served as both Vice President and Treasurer of the Switzerland County Elementary School PTA; and has served as a board member of the Switzerland County Salvation Army.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

First and foremost, I am the mother of a Switzerland County student. I have served on the SCES PTA for the past nine years, where I have advocated for our children through various projects. My 17 1/2 years of experience with the Southeastern Indiana Economic Opportunity Corporation (SIEOC) has provided me knowledge in finance, human resources, payroll, benefits, employment issues, grant writing/management, administration and personnel management.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

I feel all of the issues facing our school board and, in turn, our schools are equally important. Our teachers and staff are expected to do more with less; our students deal with bullying, drug abuse, and peer pressure. It is the responsibility of the school board to ensure that our staff members have the resources and tools available to address these issues and continue to offer the best educational experiences for our children.

In addition, the administration and school board must be held accountable for the finances. I believe that the finances should be transparent to the public and that the school board should encourage community input on major projects.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

There is no magic formula to fix the issues; however, by working together as a community I believe we can make positive changes in the lives of our children. If elected, I will listen to the community and strive to ensure that changes do take place.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

I will work to ensure transparency in the school's financial data and encourage public input and ideas as to how the funds are utilized. In doing so, this will give the community a voice in our children's future.

I will work to seek grants and other funding for educational, recreational, and artistic options for our children. By seeking additional and other funding sources, the school system could expand the educational, sports, and artistic opportunities available to the students of our school corporation. I will be committed to keeping an open mind and listening to the community's ideas for strengthening our school system and work towards implementing those ideas.



Eddie Haskell: Cotton Sch. Bd.

Eddie Haskell is seeking election to the Switzerland County School Board representing Cotton Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. He is running against Bill Roberts and Colleen Lay.

He resides near East Enterprise with his wife, Angie: He has a son, Luke; a daughter, Lauren; and a step-daughter, Angelique.

He graduated from Switzerland County High School; and attended Hanover Business College. He has been involved with the Switzerland County Soil and Water Conservation District.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

Common sense.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

Cut wasteful spending.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

Stop the tax paying people of Switzerland County from having to pay for school board members' health insurance in excess of $125,000 per year.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

By letting the public know what's going on. The tax paying people deserve to know where their hard-earned money is going.



Tonya Moore: York School Bd.

Tonya Moore is seeking reelection to the Switzerland County School Board representing York Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. She is running against Josh Deck and Gary Reynolds.

She resides near Florence with her husband, Lester, and daughter Maggie, who is 17 and a sophomore at Switzerland County High School. She graduated from Dillsboro High School; and earned a degree from Ball State University in consumer living.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

I served as an instructional assistant in the Switzerland County Schools for 28 years. I have served four years as a school board member. I have a bachelor of science degree from Ball State University. I have shared my life with children for over 34 years, helping them to grow and learn.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

The fixing of the Switzerland County Elementary School in East Enterprise. The building has only had one major repair, that was the roof. It needs many areas of work to bring it up to safety codes. The school needs more rooms for the sixth grade to come back out there. We need a larger room for our nurses and our secretaries, and more room for our children already there.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

I will continue to strive to communicate with all parties involved in the remodeling of the schools. Parents, teachers, the superintendent, and other board members should all be involved with any decisions that need to be made. I like all other parties to be involved with us to make good decisions.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

Most Switzerland County residents know that I make all decisions based on the needs of the children. My 'yes' is 'yes'. My 'no' is 'no'. I do not waver on things I truly believe in. The next four years I will be a stronger voice than ever for our children.



Josh Deck: York School Bd.

Joshua Ryan Deck is seeking election to the Switzerland County School Board representing York Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. He is running against Tonya Moore and Gary Reynolds.

He resides near Florence with wife, Erin, and daughters Addison, age 4 and Kennedy, age 1. He is a 1999 graduate of Switzerland County High School; and holds a trade degree from Union Ironworkers.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

I have an open mind, a willingness to listen and learn. I believe we can create a positive environment where every student can achieve his or her own goals.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

In my opinion, the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board is the graduation rate.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

I would push to find solutions to these problems that focus on uniting the parents and community to support the students, administrators, and teachers.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

If elected, I would like to see major board decisions discussed with the public and staff before the final vote is made. Also, I would like to see each board member accountable for their own insurance, that way more money can be put back to the schools.



Tammy Hayes: Pleasant Sch. Bd.

Tammy Hayes is seeking election to the Switzerland County School Board representing Pleasant Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. She is running against Jim Phipps.

She resides near Moorefield with her husband, Chris, son Hunter and daughter Hannah. She is a high school graduate; and has served on the board of the United Fund of Switzerland County; the Switzerland County Chamber of Commerce; and currently serves on the board of the Vevay-Switzerland County Foundation.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

I have 13 years experience in finance with MainSource Bank. I have been treasurer of the Vevay-Switzerland County Foundation for the past four years; and have also served as the treasurer of the Switzerland County Chamber of Commerce for the past six years.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

Communication, support and accountability is a necessity. Comments, questions, and concerns from children and parents need to be answered and justified. We need to be more supportive of our teachers and staff with the new RISE program being handed down by the state level. We need to make sure the education our children are receiving is one of the best at a state level.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

I would make sure that every statement, question, or concern by a child, teacher, parent, or member of our community is documented and followed through with. I would give our teachers and administration my full support to help make sure that are given the appropriate tools to make sure our children are getting the best education possible.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

I will make sure we have better communication with our children, parents, teachers and the community. You will see someone who loves the children of this community and who only wants them to have the best possible education for the brightest future. I will show these students and teachers and community members the support they need and deserve. Questions and concerns will be documented and answers will be given.



Jim Phipps: Pleasant Sch. Bd.

James (Jim) Phipps is seeking reelection to the Switzerland County School Board representing Pleasant Township. Although candidates represent a township, all school board candidates are voted on county wide. He is running against Tammy Hayes.

He resides near Pleasant with his wife, Shannon. They have three daughters: Liz, Becky, and Jamie.

He holds a bachelor of science degree from The Ohio State University.

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(1) What are your qualifications for the position you are seeking?

Experience comes to mind. I am completing 16 years as a school board member and seeking a fifth term representing Pleasant Township. I have been President of the board a number of those years, overseeing building projects and hiring of key personnel like superintendents and principals. This past experience working with staff and being a member of the board has educated me in school budgets and financing. This is not an easy area to learn, especially with the changes that continually occur from state mandates.

I am a District Director with Farm Service Agency (FSA) overseeing the operation of 11 county offices and 50 employees. My job involves working with farmers in eastern and southern Indiana on farm ownership and operating loans along with USDA programs that are offered. This experience has enabled me to make decisions that are financially sound and responsive to children's needs, while taking into account taxpayers' concerns.

(2) In your opinion, what is the single major issue that needs to be addressed by the school board (or the schools in general)?

There are so many and that is why being an elected member is so challenging and rewarding when accomplishments are made. Funding is my major issue that I am concerned with. After all, funding is what makes everything happen in our schools. We have partnered with the School Endowment Board using riverboat revenue on school projects. Children attending our schools do not pay for textbooks. Our school debt such as building improvements and additions and school technology are paid for and not passed along to the taxpayers. This is a great benefit to our children and property owners in our community.

Will it continue? I certainly hope so. A major concern of mine and others has to do with the shrinking gaming dollars. Ohio has starting gaming in that state, with Kentucky soon to follow. Our facilities are top quality educational facilities which include athletic fields and I plan on working with other board members to keep them that way. We have been thrifty with all revenues and have kept expenses to a minimum which has allowed reductions as seen in neighboring counties have not happened here because of the budget oversight done by myself and other board members.

(3) How would you work to fix that issue?

We have partnered with the School Endowment Board on many projects. We have met before in a formal public meeting to discuss planning on the current school project in East Enterprise with great success. I will continue, if President or a member, to continue these meetings to foster an even better relationship than we have. After all, everyone's goal is to do what's best for children and the community. Other relationships need to be expanded on with state legislators and officials to let them know what riverboat revenue has done not only for our community but the great things those dollars have done for our children and schools.

(4) If elected, what difference will people see in your office with you there? How will things change?

You will see the same quality education that has been afforded our children in previous years. We have always put education of our young people as a priority and will continue to do so. We offer competitive salaries and always try to attract the best teachers and administrators. We will continue to do that and offer the best education and training for our children for the next step of their lives, no matter what they choose as a career.





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