OUR VIEW: Montcalm County’s District 2 a tough choice


By Daily News • Last Updated 10:57 am on Thursday, August 02, 2012

District 2 residents have a tough choice between two good candidates in the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners primary election Aug. 7.

Tom Lindeman, 68, of Eureka Township, and Lloyd Walker, 83, of Greenville, are facing off for the District 2 position. Both candidates are Republicans.

Mr. Walker is currently the incumbent District 1 commissioner for precincts 1, 2 and 4 in the city of Greenville, while Mr. Lindeman is currently the incumbent District 2 commissioner for  precinct 3 in the city of Greenville, all of Eureka Township and portions of Fairplain Township.

Due to redistricting of Montcalm County, the two incumbents are now forced to fight for the District 2 seat.

We are longtime fans of both men.

Mr. Lindeman is known for playing devil’s advocate at Board of Commissioner meetings. He is often the one asking the tough questions and holding his colleagues accountable, which is what we want our elected officials to do. Mr. Lindeman can also be stubborn and cynical. He is quick to cast a “no” vote if he has any negative suspicions, which he often does.

Mr. Walker is known for his approachability and experience. He is an affable gentleman with many helpful connections and resources. At 83 years old, he is also one of the oldest members of the Board of Commissioners.

Both men are involved in their communities. They attend a majority of their local city or township meetings and are good about updating their constituents about relevant county issues.

Our editorial board members were in a dead heat when it came to choosing one of these fine candidates to endorse. We think District 2 voters will get a winner with either man.

• • • •

District 4 residents have the option of choosing between two Republican candidates in the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners primary election Aug. 7.

Ron Braman, age not provided, of Richland Township is challenging incumbent Roger Caris, 65, of Richland Township for the position.

District 4 encompasses all of Crystal Township, Ferris Township and Richland Township.

Mr. Braman currently serves as a trustee on the Richland Township Board, is president of the Bass Lake Association and is a member of the Richland Township Planning Commission and Montcalm County Parks & Rec Commission. He has experience with finances, having served as financial secretary-treasurer, president and chairman of Saginaw Steering Gear, working with revenue totaling more than $1.6 million.

Mr. Caris is currently the District 8 commissioner, but is now running for District 4, due to redistricting changes. He has served eight terms as commissioner and he is also chairman of the Montcalm County Finance & Personnel Committee.
Both men name finances as a major issue for Montcalm County.

If elected, Mr. Braman wants to take a long, hard look and how and where county funds are being spent. He believes a large percentage of the local population is struggling to make ends meet and can’t afford to pay for anymore assessments.

Mr. Caris wants to continue to take a conservative approach to county finances, looking beyond the current budget for plans and solutions. He also wants to encourage businesses to relocate to Montcalm County, as well as encourage current local businesses to expand their operations.

We think both men are good candidates, but Mr. Caris’ longtime experience on the Board of Commissioners, as well as his knowledge of county finances, gives him an edge. Mr. Caris has our endorsement for District 4 commissioner.

Editorial opinions are the consensus of The Daily News editorial board.

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