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ELECTION 2020: Sanders County Commissioner


October 1, 2020


NAME: A Ben "Tony" Cox

EDUCATION: Graduate, Thompson Falls Public Schools, K-12; Graduate, University of Montana, Business Administration; Graduate, Montana Highway Patrol Academy

PROFESSION: Montana State Trooper, 1989-2009 (retired); Sanders County Commissioner, 2009-present

1. What characteristics make you right for this position?

I treat people with respect and care. If there is a problem or an issue, as a commissioner I am able to identify it, discuss it and find possible solutions. We deal with a multitude of personalities and at times it can be very difficult. I respond to everyone who contacts me in a timely manner. I have empathy and a real concern for other people and the citizens of Sanders County. Being a commissioner can be very rewarding at times and I enjoy my job and want to continue to serve the people of Sanders County.

2. What specifically would you do to promote economic growth in Sanders County?

We need to promote our beautiful area, quality of life and abundant recreation opportunities. Combine these with well supported schools and health care facilities (Clark Fork Valley Hospital) and we will bring additional businesses and services to our area, better serving a growing population. Keep local regulations and red tape to a minimum and support the responsible harvesting of timber (Thompson River Lumber is important to Sanders County!) from our state and national forests along with environmentally safe extraction of our mineral wealth (Rock Creek Mine). Keep Sanders County business friendly and the area will continue to grow and prosper.

3. If you are elected and look ahead to the end of your term, what one significant change would you initiate?

Commissioners Carol Brooker, Glen Magera and I have overseen many major projects the last few years. A new bridge for Heron finally became a reality, redesigning and relocating our solid waste transfer facility, building a new road shop west of Thompson Falls after a fire. Roads have been improving throughout the county. The one significant change we need to oversee or help with is more space for the sheriff's office. The administration and staff need adequate office space and possibly the 911 call center needs to be relocated. Law enforcement is vital to our communities.

4. What else would you like residents to know about you?

I'm a Montana native. My family moved to Sanders County in 1905. I truly care about our future and that I work hard and try to do the right thing for the citizens of Sanders County. I was proud to help push for a new Heron Bridge. I'm a strong believer in 2nd Amendment rights, private property rights, responsible development of our natural resources, personal freedoms and protecting small businesses. We need to continue improving county roads and infrastructure. I love my job and want to continue to represent ALL of Sanders County. I would appreciate your vote.

NAME: Chris Stough

EDUCATION: Bachelor's Degree in Science, State College of Florida; Associates in Liberal Arts, State College of Florida; Certificate Statistics and Analysis, Regis University

OCCUPATION: Contractor for the Department of Defense.

1. What characteristics make you right for this position?

I believe it paramount that an elected official maintains high moral and ethical standards while bestowed with the trust of our citizens and decisions within our communities; after all, we are to serve as a fiduciary to their voice. I hold a federal security clearance and have a broad level of education and experience, both public and private sector – nationally and internationally, that coincides with the needs of our county. I plan to utilize those resources in support of our county efforts. I am a devout family man, I have a tenacious work ethic, and I pledge to serve this position with integrity, professionalism, and unparalleled commitment.

2. What specifically would you do to promote economic growth in Sanders County?

Sanders County is undoubtedly growing with a changing demographic. I will engage with Montana Association of Counties, State Legislature and National Association of Counties to:

• Support an increase of safe, balanced access and use of our natural resources and public lands

• Support responsible logging efforts to maintain proper forest management and reduce wildfire threats.

• Consider safe and reclaimable mining efforts to increase tax revenues supporting roads, schools, senior services improvements, and law enforcement resources.

• Pursue resources for increasing community recreational programs for our children.

• As a certified FEMA Professional and First Responder, I will enhance our 911 communications infrastructure to support expanded businesses and safe communities.

3. If you are elected and look ahead to the end of your term, what one significant change would you initiate?

The most significant change that I would initiate is that I would engage in a hands-on, supportive, and assertive effort to collaborate with our county department heads, commissioners, and community. I would initiate further transparency of our county budget, making it easily accessed from the web; and ensure opportunity for our public to adequately provide input to large decisions within their respective communities.

4. What else would you like residents to know about you?


Great things start with great families and communities. During this campaign, I have travelled thousands of miles within our county meeting with Law Enforcement, Deputies, Mayors, Department

Heads, Roads Crews, Mechanics, and many others to learn about the great things in our county and our challenges. I am confident that I can achieve better by being more engaged.

I'm a U.S. Marine, a devout family man, and I will give this position the full-time, attention Sanders County deserves. I am a conservative, endorsed by our local Republican Committee, and hold support across all political venues. I'm committed to faith, freedom, and our liberties. I believe in hard work; and I will make fair, balanced, and informed decisions. I will always give straight, honest answers, because that you deserve.


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