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Candidate Q&A: Ismael Gutierrez, Elko County Commission
Candidate Q&A

Candidate Q&A: Ismael Gutierrez, Elko County Commission

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Do you support the governor’s COVID-19 mandates for Nevada and how he has handled Elko County specifically?

Short answer is no. As proven by my vote in our city council meeting. I feel that every county in our state is different. The more populated urban counties face different challenges than rural counties. I feel this is one of the reasons we elect local officials. We should know what is best for our residents. A one size fits all approach is never good.

With that said, this does not mean that I do not support some of the recommendations set forth by the CDC. I have worked in the medical field for 34 years. Therefore I encourage people to practice good hygiene. Wash and or sanitize hands. I know masks are not 100% effective. I choose to wear one. I feel they have had a role in keeping me healthy and safe throughout my career, even in these trying times. I work around sick people all the time, Covid-19 patients included. So if I can diminish the chance of me spreading it, that to me is a small sacrifice on my part.

If resources were available, what one area of county services do you feel needs the most additional attention?

Infrastructure is always at the top of priorities. I feel some times medical, EMS, fire, and police departments are often overlooked. It is time to focus on these issues. Especially with today’s technology, and the growth of our ranching communities. Due to COVID-19 We have learned how to adapt to certain things. Let’s look at some of these things and turn them into something positive.

The commissioner you will be replacing has been an active proponent of shifting control of public lands from federal to local government. Do you think this effort needs more or less attention from the county?

Acquiring land is a good thing. Let’s put some of this land to good use. I am open to any good ideas, anything from a tiny home community near the gold mines to attracting bigger businesses. This is definitely a conversation to have with our residents. Sometimes people move out of the city for a reason and I can respect that.

Do you have any plans or suggestions for economic development and diversifying the local economy beyond its mining-oriented base?

Economic development and diversifying the economy is one of the main reasons I became a city councilman. Being pro-business is one of the reasons our city is growing. I would encourage businesses to come to our cities and county. Show them that we can be good partners.

Nevada laws can sometime be a little challenging. Let’s work with businesses, in a friendly manner. We must also remember attracting new businesses is not the only way to improve our economy. It is my understanding that some of the ranching communities host events such as rodeos without the proper permits. Let’s work with them. Make these events legal and safe for people to enjoy.

Let’s encourage and allow existing businesses to come forward with some of their ideas. Working together is the only way to accomplish good things for all.

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