Presiding Commissioner

Al Purcell (R)

Boards

None listed

Contact

Phone: (816) 200-1266‬

Our Candidate Summary

Socially Conservative
Fiscal Conservative

These assessments are based on the answers or lack of answers supplied by the candidates. Scott’s responses indicate a socially conservative and fiscally conservative position.

Al on the Issues

What part does faith play in your desire to run for office?

My faith plays a key role in my life and has guided me for all my years of living. Yes, my faith did play a key role in my pursuit for this elected position, I feel a strong desire to serve. Proverbs: 29 verse 18 Without Vision the people shall perish is a verse I quote in my pursuit for this office. I have a Vision for Buchanan County.

What parts of the county government would receive more attention if you were elected?

I have a strong background in process management so I will be reviewing how the county communicates with our taxpayers and how we measure our performance with regard to expenditures and how we compare with other counties. This will be a fundamental approach, I will utilize- it will be “Manage by Fact” using real data. This is important however county employees are key, so: My first actions will be to meet with all elected officials to gain their insights to the working relationship with the Commissioner’s office. Other key actions will be meetings with key staff employees to fully understand their roles and support required.

Do you plan to promote any changes to existing taxes? If so, why?

No, I don’t. I will review all county taxes to fully understand what the tax is, why and how we compare with like counties.

Are the county’s taxes too low, high, or just right?

I don’t know. We need to review each of our revenue streams and likewise our expenditures moreover we should also benchmark with other like counties to see how we compare.

What do you see as the most pressing needs for infrastructure or capital projects in the county?

First and foremost, our focus needs to be on safety of our 400 miles of roads and bridges, that said I will convene a review of critical needs and opportunities which would/could enable economic growth.

Should the county be encouraging building and development?

Yes, however we need to be measured in our development with a balance of agriculture.

What budgetary adjustments may need to be made within the county’s fiscal priorities?

I need to gather more information however I’m a strong supporter of zero-based budgeting. Start with zero each year and build the budget up from the bottom with a focus on reducing year over years costs. We should always benchmark with other entities to ensure we have best practices.

When managing public agencies, is it better to have more employees at a modest wage or fewer employees at a wage high enough to attract quality applicants?

We need to ensure we pay our folks a competitive wage to ensure retention and they are receiving a living wage. Turnover of skilled employees has a cost of 5X their salary thus an employee who has benefits and salary of $40k in a skilled position that turnover true cost is $200k.

Should more county services be contracted with private providers or done by the government? What is the appropriate balance?

We need to be vigilant with taxpayer money. Services need to be competitive in costs and always reviewed and compared with industry standards and best practices.

What is the county’s responsibility to public education, and what would you prioritize?

Education in our community is a responsibility of all elected people, I feel a strong sense of responsibility to interface with our school leaders including our teachers to fully understand their requirements. I will meet with our education leaders to gain an understanding of our student’s needs not just at K-12 but at our university level with a strong focus on Vocational training.

How would you be able to encourage new business development within the county?

Working at all levels of State and local leaders. Department of Economic Development and Missouri Partnership are critical organizations to engage along with our local business community including the Chamber. We need a much bolder Vision for Economic Growth. Embracing the 20-40 plan which was developed by the Chamber and United Way needs to be engaged and implemented. Working to strengthen the Community Alliance will be a key goal this will help us focus on key priorities in our community. We must stop the loss of our youth. Our county has lost 6k people in the last 11 years.

If elected, how would you communicate with the citizens of Buchanan County?

We will utilize all levels of media to communicate. Transparency!! Townhalls, weekly posts anyway our taxpayers would like to be informed.