Tischer challenges Backman
September 17, 2020
Compiled by Diana Zimmerman
Candidates for local and regional offices were asked to respond to a brief questionnaire from The Wahkiakum County Eagle. Here are the responses from Mike Backman, who is currently District 1 on the Wahkiakum County Board of Commissioners, and his challenger, Lee Tischer.
In primary election, District 1 (Puget Island and South Cathlamet precincts) favored Tischer in a 434-240 vote.
Challenger Lee Tischer
Lee Tischer is challenging Mike Backman, incumbent, for the County Commissioner District 1 position.
Tischer attended Wahkiakum High School and Lower Columbia College, as well as numerous conferences and seminar trainings that he believes will make him an effective board member.
He was a member of the Wahkiakum School District Board of Directors for 16 years, a Puget Island Fire Department commissioner for six years, and is currently a Port District 2 commissioner. He is a member of the Law & Justice Council, the Civil Service Board, one of the founding members of the Wahkiakum Dollars for Scholars board, a Chamber of Commerce board member, and a member of the Broadband Committee.
Why run for this position?
"As a lifetime resident of Wahkiakum County," Tischer wrote, "I have seen changes throughout the years. We are rural, which is one of the most significant reasons we choose to live here. I feel now more than ever we need to fight from being over-regulated. I feel I can be an asset to the board of commissioners and work as a team attending to the issues that will benefit all Wahkiakum residents.
"I have years of experience serving on many local boards, problem-solving, working with budgets, negotiating contracts, and organizing projects and events. I will be able to devote all my time and attention 12 months of the year as the job as your county commissioner requires today. I'm willing to spend the time needed to work with our representatives in Olympia to secure funding to keep the services accustomed to all. Working hard fighting one size fits all regulations and unfunded mandates that put more burdens on all Wahkiakum taxpayers. I have always put community first and have promoted Wahkiakum County as a great place to live, start a business, work, and retire. I will continue to work to improve those assets."
What do you hope to accomplish?
"I feel there are three commissioners for a reason, so each of the three districts has fair representation and a voice," Tischer wrote. "I will listen to District 1 residents' concerns and work to solve problems in the area. As a resident, I'm well aware of the bank erosion and milfoil choking our waterways and will be directly involved. I look forward to working with Wahkiakum's elected officials and department heads and the many volunteer boards and giving the recognition and respect they so deserve. I will work hard to help get broadband internet to all Wahkiakum residents, repair our aging road surfaces, and help to secure funding for Wahkiakum County while trying to keep local tax burdens as low as possible. And brainstorm with our fellow agencies to find ways to expand water service to western Wahkiakum residents and sewer connections to the east."
What's on his mind?
2) Unfunded mandates;
3) One size fits all regulations;
4) Creating jobs while retaining rural lifestyle;
5) Encouraging services for advanced age population;
6) Keeping local health care services available.