FREDERICK — Don’t call it a debate, but all five Weld County commissioner candidates will share a room Monday night to say why they deserve your vote.
The Carbon Valley Chamber of Commerce will host its sixth candidate forum in four years, but this one marks the first race outside local Tri-Towns municipal elections.
The forum will match up all commissioner candidates though they’re vying for two different seats: Democrat Duane Leise and Republican Bill Garcia are competing for an at-large commissioner seat being vacated by Mike Geile. Republican Doug Rademacher, Democrat Rich Lopez and independent candidate Sharon Socher will scrap for the District 2 seat that Commissioner Glenn Vaad will soon leave open.
“For a lot of these people, this is their first time in public life,” chamber president and forum moderator Steve Burton said. “They’re not professional politicians.”
Burton said the full-on debates he’s previously experienced, though spontaneous, were more about showmanship than substance.
“The public just wants to hear what the candidates’ positions are,” he said. “They want the real meat and potatoes: growth, water and transportation.”
Under Monday’s format, each candidate will make a three-minute opening statement, after which Burton will ask 15 questions. The candidates, who received the questions by mail last week, will have one minute to respond to each.
The second half of the debate promises more excitement, Burton said, with candidates fielding questions from the public and rival campaign staff.
Ben Ready can be reached at 303-684-5326, or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Weld candidate forum
What: Weld County commissioner candidate forum
When: 7 p.m. Monday
Where:Frederick High School auditorium, 600 Fifth St., Frederick