Douglas County commissioner race: Partridge says water top issue

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Republican Roger Partridge, a Douglas County commissioner candidate, lives in Sedalia and has lived in Douglas County for 17 years. He is married and has two sons and two grandchildren, all of whom live in Douglas County. Partridge has a bachelor’s degree from Purdue University and a double master’s degree from West Virginia University and Arcadia University outside of Philadelphia.

He is a physical therapist and athletic trainer with a 25-year practice in Castle Rock as a small business owner. Partridge previously worked in corporate health care and as an athletic trainer in college and professional football.

Colorado Community Media asked the following questions of the candidates in the race for Douglas County commissioner, District 2. Below are Partridge’s answers.

What makes you the best candidate for this office?

Serving as a member and past chairman of the Douglas County Planning Commission provided me with a working insight into the duties of a commissioner. Previous experiences involved decisions affecting water, transportation, law enforcement, special districts, rezoning and many other issues that are part of everyday life in Douglas County.

A commissioner should have a broad understanding of the county and a passion to be a strong voice for the people they represent. I believe government should listen to and work for the people. I want to protect and maintain this county we all call home.

What do you see as the biggest challenge facing the county and what would you do to meet that challenge?

Many issues come to the desks of commissioners on any given day. All are important, whether they be roads, traffic, open space, growth, economic development or jobs.

But, as it has been for years, water is the most important issue. More specifically, renewable water at reasonable rates that meets future needs and decreases the use of underlying aquifers. We the people of Douglas County are not one of the thirty-some water providers serving the water needs of our county. But now is the time for the commissioners to be more active in assuring sensible and cost-effective approaches to the acquisition and storing of renewable water by water providers while safeguarding our present water resources.

What can the board of commissioners do to ensure that oil and gas drilling is done responsibly in the county?

The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) governs the permitting of oil and gas drilling in Colorado and the owner of a mineral right has certain rights which allow oil and gas exploration. There is growing interest for some of these mineral rights in Douglas County to be explored.

The commissioners play a role in mitigating the impacts of drilling, with certain limitations. Working with the COGCC and the oil and gas companies is a sensible approach that is presently being pursued cooperatively at the local, county and state levels.

I will assure Douglas County continues to take an active role protecting the people, environment, and resources while we work at becoming more energy independent.

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