Republican Harold “Lee” Wathan Jr. will be challenging Democrat Elizabeth Dalton for the Madison County Board seat in District 28 in the November general election.
Wathan said he was motivated to run after his experience as a small businessman serving as chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals in Glen Carbon.
“Small business people, including me, find ourselves working on a tight budget," Wathan said. "We’re constantly looking for ways to provide more, with less, for our customers."
Wathan is a national sales director for life insurance company Primerica.
"When I served as Chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals in Glen Carbon, I saw firsthand how government rules and regulations can place negative, unintended restrictions on our ‘citizen clients,’” Wathan said.
Wathan said he feels that the government should run more in the way that a small business treats its clients.
“I believe our government should always strive to provide more, with less,” Wathan said. “This is exactly what we, as consumers, expect from the businesses we give our money to. Why shouldn’t we expect the same from the elected officials that we give our taxes to? After all, it’s our money. We work hard for it, and we should expect them to respect that.”
When it comes to government regulation and spending, Wathan’s mindset is “the fewer the better.”
“Here’s what’s good for us: fewer roadblocks in the way of small businesses trying to create local jobs, fewer government ‘patronage’ employees that got a job because somewhere, sometime they contributed to some candidate for something – no more pay to play. Fewer forms to fill out, fewer questions to answer, and less money out of our hard earned paychecks going to them,” said Wathan.
Wathan also called for tax decreases, saying that citizens earn their money and are entitled to see it spent wisely.
When it comes to getting along with the other members of the board, Wathan said that compromise is something for which he will always strive.
“I realize I can’t do anything alone, and nothing will get done without building a consensus. I view this position as one of stewardship, and will do my absolute best to leave the office in better shape than I found it,” said Wathan.