Iverson aims to continue as county commissioner, prioritizes economic development

Victor Iverson, candidate for Washington County Commissioner, St. George, Utah, April 9, 2014 | Photo courtesy of Victor Iverson, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – Victor Iverson currently occupies Seat B of the Washington County Commission. He was not elected to the position, but appointed in the wake of Commissioner Denny Drake’s resignation. Iverson is actually still very much a candidate for Commission Seat B and hopes to be elected to said seat in November.

Iverson is running on the Republican ticket and will be running against Democratic challenger Paul Van Dam.

Both Iverson and Van Dam, the latter who took issue with Iverson’s appointment in June, tout their experience in working with city, state, and federal officials as something that will benefit the County Commission.

Van Dam has been a county attorney and also Utah Attorney General from 1989-92. For the last few years Iverson has worked for Sen. Mike Lee as his natural resources and agricultural resources advisor, something he said has made him very familiar with the county issues.

I have a good understanding of what we’re dealing with,” he said, “how federal, state and local interaction works; I have experience in that.”

For people following the commission race, Iverson is likely best known for his stance on public lands. While he supports gaining local control over the public lands, he also promotes working with federal agencies for the benefit of the citizens of Washington County.

“As county commissioner, I plan to protect the county’s interest and to be at the table when it comes to land management, access, or designation,” Iverson said. “I’m going to be looking out for the citizens of Washington County when it comes to public lands.”

On matters of growth, Iverson spoke to points of economic development, transportation, and the Lake Powell Pipeline.

Economic Development

(Economic development) is going to be a priority,” Iverson said. “I believe people have the right to prosper and prosperity.”

Washington County has a lot to offer businesses that want to relocate here, he said, noting the standard of living the county offers, along with access to a major highway.

Graduating from high school in 1989, Iverson said he felt his generation was the first that didn’t have to move away to find work thanks to the economic development that had been done up to that point. He said he plans to continue that development for new generations.

Northern Corridor

On transportation, which he called a huge issue, Iverson said he would “absolutely” push for the Northern Corridor, a roadway that would connect Interstate 15 and state Route 18. The roadway would also pass through the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve.

“All of our transportation planning right now is built on the premise we’ll have a northern corridor,” he said. “If we don’t, we really get in a tough situation with (St. George) Boulevard and getting traffic off of that.”

Iverson said the road is promised to the county by the federal government through the Washington County Growth and Conservation Act of 2009. As the roadway runs through desert tortoise habitat, however, the government has begun to pull back on that possibility.

“I’m going to be pushing really hard to get the federal government to honor its commitment,” he said.

Lake Powell Pipeline

Concerning the Lake Powell Pipeline, Iverson said, “we need a safe and sustainable water supply in order to have prosperity and any kind of future here in the community.”

Iverson said many people have asked him about the cost of the proposed pipeline, and he said the cost estimates are still preliminary. The pipeline project as a whole is still being studied out.

It’s really the only option I see out there,” Iverson said.

For additional information regarding Iverson’s stand on the issues, visit his website.

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Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.

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  • Bender October 14, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    We need someone who can make sound, informed decisions, instead of just spouting loony right wing platitudes at every whipstitch. Improving quality of life for ourselves and our grandchildren will not be facilitated by selling off our federal lands to the highest bidder. Iverson and his ilk would have you believe that if only a man could graze a cow, drive an ATV or dig a mine anywhere he pleased that then the streets of Washington County would then be paved with gold.
    The capital costs of the Lake Powell Pipeline are astronomical given our small population. A family of six’s share of the pipeline capital costs would be over $150,000, assuming a likely pipeline project total cost of close to $4B. This is likely the same amount this family spent on their home! How can a sane man even consider this as an option? The only explanation is that Iverson is not looking out for you, his is taking care of the wealthy pioneer family landowners, the real estate agents and the home builders.

  • El Jefe October 14, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    I don’t agree with the Powell Pipeline and its prohibited costs. But I do agree with the premise Iverson has in experience with the feds. Lawyers are not the best trusted sources in politics lately. Why would Washington county voters want a lawyer on the commission anyways?

    • Bender October 14, 2014 at 4:31 pm

      Iverson’s fed bashing is just grandstanding. There is real work to be done at the county level. Quixotic attempts at stealing land from the American public are doomed to only waste money (lawyers at $200+/hr) and time. I’ll leave it to someone else to dissect your stunning logic about lawyers.

  • Bobber October 14, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    good ol’ boy crooks with the same ol’ blah blah blah…

  • Washington Co Citizen October 15, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    I agree with Victor. People want to live here. The cost of the pipeline will certainly be felt by citizens but the impact fees will carry the brunt of the cost. I, like Victor, want an economy where my children can stay and work.

    • Bender October 15, 2014 at 8:58 pm

      Pipeline MAY be affordable when we grow out to 500,000+ population. No way is it even remotely affordable in the near term. If someone tells you otherwise they are either a fool or a lair. Of course it is possible for a politician to be both.

  • Granma November 4, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Interesting to me that when anyone disagrees with a comment from BOBBER or BENDER, these two (and there are a couple others who are always negative in their comments), BOBBER and BENDER resort to name calling. It always makes me cringe when someone makes a statement as if it were a true fact without any criteria to back it up. Most problems we are faced with are complex. We need to try to get all the facts, not just opinions.

    • Bender November 4, 2014 at 11:02 am

      BENDER is often guilty of gratuitous name calling, but I sense the issue here, GRANMA, is that BENDER is not being Mormon Nice. This isn’t sacrament meeting where everyone always raises their hands to agree with whatever the guy at the podium asks for a “show of hands” on. BENDER would like to hear you refute specifics, rather than complain your feelings are hurt.

  • Koolaid November 4, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Pipeline = Washington County Republican Pipe Dream. Who’s your buddy, by the way? Who gets the money in this deal?

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