TOPPENISH - Standing near the Toppenish railroad station platform, Yakima County Commissioner Ron Gamache announced his platform for re-election as a county commissioner Tuesday afternoon.
The first-term commissioner said he wants to continue to support efforts to bring more new businesses and jobs into Yakima County, as well as working to develop more interlocal partnerships between the county and its citizens.
A long-time Toppenish farmer and businessman, Gamache said he will continue to use his background in agri-business to help the county adjust to the county's ongoing budget crisis.
"I will be working to include more citizen input in aiding the commissioners in making the hard choices we are facing in county spending," he added.
"We need the citizens' input to helps us make cuts in areas which we have control over.
"We are mandated to provide certain health and safety coverage but there are areas such as parks and extension services which we can cut.
"But we need the citizens' opinions about what should be omitted from the budget. I feel cuts should be up to the people," Gamache said.
"I plan to encourage the development of a new citizens' task force to help the commissioners meet the Valley's budgetary needs," Gamache said.
In addition, Gamache said he hopes to optimize the county's existing resources to promote economic development in the county. He said the use of partnerships in the past has aided the county in attracting new businesses to the county, such as the Wal-Mart distribution center in Grandview.
"We need to use all our resources to develop more partnerships in order to bring more job and business growth opportunities to the county," he said.