Gorder & Holst Running For District 2 Commissioner


In three weeks Richland County voters will be able to vote for a District 2 Commissioner. The term of the current commissioner, Shane Gorder, expires on Dec. 31 of this year. Two men are running for the position. Shane Gorder is running for another term, while Brian Holst is seeking his first.

Richland County is divided into three districts. Voters from each district can vote one commissioner into office. The three commissioners combined form Richland County’s Board of County Commissioners. According to the Montana State Legislature on their website, http://www.leg.mt.gov, “the board of County Commissioners has jurisdiction and power under such limitations and restrictions as are prescribed by law, to represent the county and have the care of the county property, and the management of the business and concerns of the county in all cases where no other provision is made by law”. The Commissioners not only have to address the concerns of the district they represent, but they also must band together and represent Richland County as a whole before the state legislature in Helena. They supervise the other county officials, assessing, collecting, safekeeping, managing, or disbursing public revenue

After 12 years of being a commissioner, Shane Gorder is seeking a third term. He said, “I’m seeking another six years to be the voice in Helena when needed and listen to the taxpayer’s concerns and help continue to make Richland County a positive place for family to return to or call home.” Gorder and the other commissioners plan to continue on the way they have for his last two terms. They are currently working with Savage School on their drinking water issues. Lambert needs updates to their lagoon and water system as well. They have also been working with the Sidney/Circle Subdivision to complete their water system, sewer system, streets, curbs, and guttering. The work for that is set to start this summer. They have also been asked by the Thiel Subdivision to assist them with their drinking water conditions. Gorder and the other commissioners are discussing helping with the Dry Redwater Project in the northwest from Culbertson to Highway 201 to bring water to parts of the county. He plans to continue as he has. Gorder is a Sidney native who worked with the road department, driving heavy equipment for 7 1/2 years. Before he was a county commissioner Gorder had served the community through different organizations. He helped build steer pens, mend, and put up fencing as a 4-H Leader. He also helped plan the decorative sidewalk behind the outdoor theater in Veteran’s Memorial Park as part of a project he did as part of the Chamber’s Leadership Class.

Brian Holst is seeking his first term of office. He has been the co-owner of J & L Fencing and Pitliners for the past 30 years. Holst says he likes to run things like a business. He said about the county’s revenue, “You shouldn’t spend it all at one time.” During a recent speech, speaking of all the new government buildings, “All these new buildings will need maintenance in the foreseeable future. That being said, they are not assets, they are liabilities that will need repair at the taxpayer’s expense. We have the money now but will we always? I think we need to save some of our money for the future, and not spend it all.” He also said he wanted to see property taxes lowered, and if not, at least steady. He also said, “I’ve always thought people should be taxed as little as possible.” Holst also spoke of MACo having too much power and wanting more transparency among the commissioners.

Both candidates are running as Republicans. The winner of the primary will run unopposed in the Nov. 8 general election.


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