I am running for a seat on the Los Alamos County Council because I’ve always been interested in public office and I really want to make a difference in my community.
I was born in Los Alamos and many of you know my father Jan McDonald who was a longtime Los Alamos High School Band director and my mother Sheryl Parsons, a retired teacher. My stepfather Will Parsons is retired from LANL and my stepmother Lynne McDonald works part time at the Lab.
I’ve worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory for over 20 years as a contractor and employee and am now a superintendent in the construction division. I also own a small part-time business as a big game outfitter and logger. My wife Jennifer and I reside in White Rock with our four dogs. We started a charitable organization recently called Famine To Feast, which is designed to address hunger needs in our community.
The platform I am running on for county council includes public safety, neighborhood revitalization, keeping it local, county charter education, county budget, empowering the less fortunate and community relations – all of which I expand upon below:
PUBLIC SAFETY – Supporting our local law enforcement, and ensuring they have the tools that they need to help keep us safe. This includes making sure the officers have avenues for the best training and the most modern equipment and technology. I want to engage the community to emphasize anti-drug and drunk driving efforts. Especially in regards to those programs that exist, and ones that could be created and developed through community input. I would want to see more officers and staff with vehicles both marked and unmarked. I would like to see all of our officers carry NARCAN.
NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION – I would like to see rehabilitation or removal of vacant housing by engaging those home owners and local real estate agencies. This will keep our neighborhoods desirable, and help property values.
KEEPING IT LOCAL – Supporting and encouraging local business, and attempting to keep Los Alamos dollars in Los Alamos. In addition to conducting due diligence in regards to the effect of construction activities on local business, and minimizing the potential impact of the disruption of business.
COUNTY CHARTER EDUCATION – Attempt to educate county residents who may not be actively aware of our Charter and how it applies to our Government by improving communication between our government and citizens. I would like to see some type of video / audio and visual on the County web page that describes what a Class H county is and how our gov’t works. Something that could also be brought in to our schools. I would like to make sure our charter is easier to access. As far I can find we are the only class H and I think we can take pride in why we are that way and appreciate the founders of the charter.
COUNTY BUDGET – Ensure that our county doesn’t continue to spend and spend. Ensuring we have a budget we can work to, and a transparent process to the development of the budget. As to spending, I would like to focus on infrastructure improvements in the community. These assets provide the greatest service to the county and require significant investment. We don’t know what is going to happen to LANL’s Contract. Seems like we just keep assuming that money is coming in…Infrastructure!!!! I don’t know of a single person at LANL that is happier morale wise since for profit came here to LANL vs NPO.
EMPOWERING THE LESS FORTUNATE BY COLLABORATING WITH LOCAL RESOURCES – I would like to work to ending hunger and food insecurity in our county/community. Ensuring basic human necessities are met for our community. Helping to find jobs and housing for lower income. Just because we are an exceptional county in regards to low homeless rates and lower amounts of people hungry in comparison to other counties, there is still a problem and we need to make it right. Liaison at LA county for NPO’s. Differences between Dem & Rep ….Lanl workers and non lanl workers….hard for everyone to agree on one thing….We can all agree on food insecurity and how it applies.
COMMUNITY RELATIONS – Continue and grow and foster relationships with local business, LANL, LAPS, National Park Service, and all local Pueblos.
Editor’s Note: Columns on each of the candidates running in the June Primary Election will be featured in the Los Alamos Daily Post print edition and online during the next few weeks.