Mathews candidates open MidPenVOTE series

by Sherry Hamilton - Posted on Sep 28, 2011 - 04:20 PM

Photo: Mathews sheriff’s candidates Mark Barrick, at podium, and Danny Howlett, seated, were among those taking part in last Thursday’s forum at Mathews Memorial Library, sponsored by the Middle Peninsula League of Voters. Photo by Charlie Koenig.

Mathews sheriff’s candidates Mark Barrick, at podium, and Danny Howlett, seated, were among those taking part in last Thursday’s forum at Mathews Memorial Library, sponsored by the Middle Peninsula League of Voters. Photo by Charlie Koenig.

The first in a series of six candidate forums sponsored by the Middle Peninsula League of Voters was civil and concise. Held last Thursday at Mathews Memorial Library, the forum provided a chance for candidates for the Mathews County offices of commissioner of the revenue, commonwealth’s attorney, sheriff, and treasurer to present their cases to the public and to answer questions.

First up were the three candidates vying for commissioner of the revenue.

Ray Hunley, incumbent commissioner of the revenue since 1975, asked for one more term in office and outlined his accomplishments, including the development of computer programs now used by other offices and making services more accessible online and over the telephone.

Challenger Doug Critchell told voters of his background, having worked as a financial adviser and having been in business to restore old buildings "for future generations." He promised that the office of the commissioner would be run "with the utmost integrity" and said he would make sure appraisals were fair and "in your best interest."

Challenger Les Hall said the office needs "a breath of fresh air" and "a new pair of eyes." Although the commissioner only has to fulfill taxing requirements, he said, he should also help people "sort through the myriad of rules." He said he would work full-time, be uniform in measurements, strive for accuracy, cross-train the staff, and increase the level of service.