|Jim Matheson speaks to an Emery County audience|
Emery County has been a popular spot this past summer for politician sightings. John Swallow, candidate for congress in the second district attended the Emery County Fair in August. He said he always brings the rain when he comes to the county. Swallow described our public lands as invaluable and that interest in those public lands is at an all time high. He said he would like to see the Grand Staircase Escalante monument redesigned. Swallow believes he understands the land issues facing the county and would work like Jim Hansen for Utah to maintain access to these public lands. "I endorse George Bush for President," said Swallow. "I want to invest in the rural economy. In congress I will join with other western congressman. I will work for a full funding for PILT. I want to fight to make America better and stronger," said Swallow.
Phillip Peay, the Republican candidate in the state senate race also visited the fair. He said he is a retired general from Mapleton who lives on a farm and understands rural Utah. He feels he has more experience in government and has worked with Gov. Leavitt on a steering committee and also worked with Gov. Matheson and Gov. Rampton. In his job with the National Guard, Peay traveled to all the outlying National Guard centers each month, so he knows the people of rural Utah.
Current State Senator, Mike Dmitrich was on hand in the county when the award from the Dept. of the Interior was given by the deputy director of the BLM Fran Cherry. Dmitrich is running for reelection against Phil Peay, Mapleton resident. Dmitrich is a Carbon County resident. He has been the state senator for 14 years and has been the senate minority leader for 14 years, prior to that he was the minority whip for two years. Dmitrich said he has worked hard to obtain additional funding for projects on SR-6. He is currently working on funding for improvements to SR-10. He said he has been instrumental in obtaining funding for several buildings for the College of Eastern Utah and most recently for the building on the San Juan campus for CEU. Dmitrich recently stopped legislation which would have made the building of Hunter 4 impossible. He is actively pushing for the construction of Hunter 4. He is also working closely with the coal industry to get Consol up and running and obtain contracts to keep county people employed on a long term basis. Dmitrich attended many county events and has plans to go the Melon Days celebration in Green River. Dmitrich said he is able to work closely with the majority party and plans a continued good relationship with their party leaders.
Democratic candidate for reelection in the second congressional district, Jim Matheson recently held a barbecue in Emery County. Matheson said he was glad to get out of Washington to visit Emery County. He said he puts Utah first and wants to do what is right for the state. He absolutely opposes any resumption of nuclear weapons testing. He said when the government said it was safe to do nuclear testing, they lied. The fallout from over 1,000 tests blew over Southern Utah causing excessive amounts of cancer. His Dad, Scott Matheson died at the age of 61 from multiple cancers. "We don't want to go down that path again," said Matheson. Emery County citizen, Bert Bentley, said he lived in Southern Utah during those times and when the fallout came they were instructed to wash their cars and driveways, "It was a scary thing," said Bentley.
"Underground testing is not safe," said Matheson. Matheson said he has worked with the house transportation committee to obtain funds for SR-6. He stated that 40 percent of the truck traffic in the state travels over SR-6. He said extra funds will become available with its listing as a high priority corridor. Matheson stated that he knows the importance of rural Utah water projects and will continue to work to fund such development. "I encourage you to take a look at what I've done and I look forward to representing you in the future," said Matheson.
Drew Sitterud, incumbent in the county commission race and also Gary Petty, Democratic candidate for county commission have made appearances at all the county celebrations this summer.