Godecke, Walsh campaign for District 3
After a surprise filing, another race for county commissioner is headed to the primary election.
Larry Walsh and planning commisioner Frank Godecke are both running for the District 3 seat, which will be vacated by term limited Doug Johnson.
Godecke, filed on March 14 without warning, whereas Walsh announced his candidacy in October.
Godecke campaigned against Johnson in 2012, but lost by around 2,600 votes.
He said he wanted to run for commissioner again because he didn’t want it to be an uncontested race.
“I am running to represent the ag community, which I am a member of,” said Godecke.
Godecke has been a Valley resident his entire life, and said that he has institutional knowledge of how things work here.
“I really like the Carson Valley. I’ve lived here all my life,” said Godecke. “I’ve seen the Valley change from when it was a sleepy little cow town in the 1960s to what it is today.”
Bringing to the table more than five years of planning commission experience, Godecke hopes to help bring the community together when it comes to the issues.
“I realize that there is more than the ag community here in this county,” he said. “There are a lot of different issues and I am running to represent everyone.”
Both Godecke and Walsh agree that the master plan is important to Douglas County.
“One of the big issues that will be coming up is the master plan,” said Godecke. “It’s a good master plan, it’s working for the county.”
“The one thing I’m really passionate about is the master plan,” said Walsh. “I think we need to be very vigilant in how we go about changing it.”
Walsh also brings four years of planning commission experience to his campaign as well as his background in the Department of Taxation, finance and accounting.
“I believe in managing growth through economic diversification,” said Walsh.
Walsh also shared in the sentiment that not everyone will agree on everything, but it is important to have those conversations.
“I’m not naïve enough to think that everyone is going to vote the same way I do,” he said. “As long as we have civil discourse, we can agree to disagree on some issues, I can get along with anybody.”
Walsh said that he would sign the same no tax pledge that candidate Dave Nelson signed, but he can also see why taxes are warranted.
“I believe taxes are a necessary thing for any community,” he said. “Without taxes we don’t have school. We don’t have roads, fire or police. It’s just how we get there.”
He agrees with Nelson that if a tax was recommended and the board is in favor they should send it to a vote of the general public.
Road conditions are one thing Walsh said he would focus on if he were elected as county commissioner.
“The roads within the GID’s, the Town of Minden, the Town of Gardnerville, they have good roads for the most part,” said Walsh. “That’s because they pay taxes that people living in the county in general do not.”
“I think we need to bring that conversation to those folks and say listen, if you want good roads, how do we accomplish it,” said Walsh.
Both candidates will be fighting for the District 3 seat in June thanks to a new law passed last year, Senate Bill 499, saying that if there are two or more candidates in the same party for a single position it will go to the primary instead of the general.
“For the most part, the change that I’ve seen has been positive,” said Godecke. “If we are going to continue to grow, we need to do so in a positive manner. We need to try to address where we need that growth and what kind of growth we need.”
Moving to the Valley 25 years ago left Walsh loving the slower lifestyle and scenic views.
“I know there are differing views on development and I want to bring those differing views together so that we can at least plan together the vision going forward for Douglas County,” said Walsh.
The primary election is on June 14.