For the past four years, Democrat Larry Prunty of Cleghorn has served on the Cherokee County Board of Supervisors, and he is currently seeking his second term in the County's Second District.
He worked for 42 years at Wilson Foods (now Tyson Retail Deli), until his retirement, and he also farms near Cleghorn.
When asked why he is running again to be on the Cherokee County Board of Supervisors, Prunty responded, "I want to keep everything equal in this county."
"No matter what part of the county you live in, I want you to be treated fairly. The worst thing I hate to see is one side of the county getting everything and people on the other side who pay taxes don't get a thing," said Prunty.
"I want to try to keep things even. In the long run that will make this county stronger," he added.
The biggest change Prunty has seen since coming to office have been the changes at the Cherokee County Landfill. He comments, "When I first got in there, things were running good and when the books started to fall apart, we had to make some quick decisions to try to save the County some money on this deal. Hopefully we got that cured."
Prunty stated that the biggest challenge that he sees for Cherokee County is trying to keep taxes down and roads and bridges kept in good shape. "A lot of this stuff is 75 to 100 years old and it's getting in bad shape." said Prunty. "There's no money to fix anymore from the State like there used to be. That is the biggest challenge I see,' he added.
Prunty also stated that roads and bridges are among his highest priorities while serving on the Board. 'If all these roads and bridges go bad at once, we'll be in bad shape. The trouble is they are all coming due at once." Prunty also stated that the roads and bridges were never designed for today's farm equipment.
As for what Prunty has learned over the past four years while being on the Board, "I've learned that the State has a lot more control than I ever figured they did."
"You might have a good idea and it looks perfect on paper, but the State says 'you can't do that'. We found out that when we tried to settle that landfill deal," commented Prunty.
When asked what the biggest incentive that the County can do to bring business to the area, Prunty said. "Help out when a business is getting started and advertise them, which we are doing. I think we got a pretty good advertising agency here (Prunty is referring to the Cherokee Area Economic Development Corporation). The Midwest is hurting, We just don't have the workers, Tyson will tell you that and I'm sure Hy-Vee will tell you the same. Workers are a hard commodity to find right now. Good workers are hard to find," said Prunty.
Prunty was then asked what he sees as the biggest waste in County Government. "If I have to say one, it would be that everybody wants new (referring to heavy equipment), and everything is so darned high priced. If we can keep the equipment running a little longer, that would help, but there also is a breaking point with the equipment out there. If it costs more to keep something running rather then buying something new, well it's a fine line. That fine line is determined between the County Engineer and the Board. We have to define and determine that fine line because the cost of these parts to fix the equipment is getting unreal," said Prunty.
Prunty reminds readers that if re-elected he would continue to try to keep things even within the County and keep the roads and bridges spread around the county. He also stated that he would appreciate everyone's vote to serve another four years.