County supervisor candidates answer questions in forum

By: Bitsy Kemper, Special to the Telegraph
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The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization that has worked since 1920 on citizen education and advocacy. With 50 Leagues scattered across the United States, the local chapter is alive and well year-round in El Dorado County, with a newsletter, Web site, meetings and events for both members and the general public. Last Thursday the El Dorado County LWV helped sponsor a Candidate Forum for four Board of Supervisor candidates in District 1 and District 2. Held in the Pavilion at the El Dorado Community Services District, a group of approximately 50 interested residents came to hear what the candidates had to say. The candidates each made opening and closing remarks, with questions moderated by Paula Lee of LWV. Hospital Volunteers Manager and District 2 candidate Barbara Smiley was surprised to see the large number of high-school students in attendance. "It's great to see youth participate in civic matters," Smiley said. She felt the forum gave ample time for each candidate to express themselves within the given time limit, yet felt she personally could have done a better job of presenting herself in last week's forum. She was surprised to see the high amount of dollars donated to and being spent by candidates. Businessman and rancher Ray Nutting, who led in the primary polls for District 2, didn't feel there were any surprises at the forum. In contrast, though, he would have preferred more time to speak. "Like always," Nutting said, "there wasn't enough time to give complete and full answers." Businessman and EID supervisor Harry Norris, candidate for County Supervisor in District 1, felt the only surprise was the small number of attendees. "I just wish more folks would attend," Norris said. When a campaign contributions question was asked, Norris was interested to hear most candidates, like himself, get small dollar amounts from many donors. In contrast, John Knight's funds mainly come from two major sponsors. El Dorado Hill Fire Board Member John R. Knight, candidate for District 1, in referencing earlier forums held for the primary, felt questions were appropriate and similar to earlier events. "Most in attendance know what the issues are," Knight said. "The LWV, the CSD, and everyone involved did a great job with peaceful presentation and the opportunity for everyone to get their point across." Another forum for District 2 candidates will be held on Sunday, Oct. 12 at 1 pm in the Four Season Active Adult Community in El Dorado Hills. District 1 will meet again on Oct. 13 in the El Dorado Hills library, for a forum sponsored by the Democratic Central Committee. ---- In the Know League of Women Voters: , John R. Knight: Harry Norris: Ray Nutting: Barbara Smiley: