Herald Journal - Voters' Guide 2010
Herald Journal / Dassel-Cokato Enterprise Dispatch / Delano Herald Journal

Carver County Commissioner Dist. 5

Two people have filed for the position of commissioner in Carver County, District 5; Bruce Schwichtenberg and James Ische.

Communities in District 5 include Benton Township, Camden Township, Chaska Township, City of Cologne, Dahlgren Township, City of Hamburg, Hancock Township, Laketown Township, City of Mayer, City of New Germany, City of Norwood Young America, San Francisco Township, and Young America Township.

James Ische

Why are you running for commissioner in Carver County?

I truly care about what happens here in Carver County. I still believe residential development should be directed towards the city, and our rural area preserved for farming and agricultural use. Although we allow home-related businesses and contractors’ yards in the rural area, I want to continue to see that as it is now large commercial industrial businesses be in our industrial parks in our cities or our rural service districts. Never before have I been so encouraged to run as I sought re-election. My constituents have asked me to continue the initiatives that I have started.

What do you think are two major issues at this time, and what do you propose to do about them?

I believe we need to work harder to spur commercial/industrial growth and improve the transportation system in our county. The new Highway 212 has increased traffic by 30 percent; eventually the four-lane will continue west to Norwood Young America. As this happens, there will be great pressure for growth along this corridor as hopefully the economy improves.

Secondly, continuing to improve our transportation system is key. In 2010, we took over Laketown Road and gave Klein Drive back to the township. In 2011, Carver County will rebuild and re-route Guernsey Avenue, which will extend County Road 11 from County Road 10 (Engler Blvd) to the new Highway 212 (Jonathan Carver Parkway).

Several years ago, Carver County reconstructed Highway 10 from Waconia to Highway 212 in Chaska. Before the rebuild, there were 7,000 vehicle trips per day. Today, there are 14,500 trips per day, so the demand is there. On Laketown Road, which was gravel, vehicle trips exceeded 1,050 per day, which is more than a gravel road can handle. After discussions with the town board and Laketown residents, the county board decided to turn Laketown Road into a county road and pave it. Road infrastructure helps to promote commercial/industrial growth, and we are working diligently to make this happen while keeping taxes in check.

Why should you be elected?

Experience. I have served on the Hancock Township Board as a supervisor for 13 years before becoming a County Commissioner. In my 14 years as a Carver County Commissioner, I have worked closely with the five cities and seven townships to learn about any issues or concerns they may have with the county.

I serve on the Association for Minnesota Counties board of directors, Metropolitan Emergency Services Board, Minnesota River Board, Metropolitan Mosquito Control District, Minnesota Valley Trust Board, Carver County Planning Commission, Carver County Fair Board, Carver Soil & Water Conservation District, Solid Waste Management Coordinating Board, as well as six other committees.

I have worked very hard to lower county taxes from 2006-10, and we will see a slight decrease again in 2011. To have held taxes and still maintained most of our county services has been very difficult, as we have seen continued reductions in local government aid from the state.

Bruce Schwichtenberg

This candidate did not return the requested questionnaire.

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