District 5 County Commissioner: Charlie Nelson

I am retired as a detective from the Wright County Sheriff’s Department in 1998, and work part-time for the Sheriff now. I am the current mayor of Montrose, work part-time as needed as a detective for my attorney son, Wright County Fair Board director, Wright County Emergency Center staff member, member of League of Minnesota Cities “Improving Local Economies” Committee.

I’m married to Connie and have five children, four and 8/9 grandchildren. I’m 60 years old and was born and raised in Montrose, attended Montrose Elementary and Junior High, and graduated Buffalo High School in 1960.

I’ve attended numerous career enhancing courses for both business and the police world. I worked my way up from laborer to manager for Lundsten Lumber Co. I joined the Sheriff’s Department as a reservist in 1963, went part-time in 1969, and full-time in 1973. I was a patrol officer, as well as field training officer for new recruits.

I helped form the Explorer Scout program there. I was the union steward. I did the bicycle training and many “bike rodeos.” I became a detective, was a member of many associated organizations, and investigated everything imaginable. I was an assistant county coroner. I’ve been a leader in Boy Scouting since I helped start Troop #312 in Montrose in 1965, helping train boys and leaders on the local, district and council levels.

I am Running for County Board because I feel my involvement will be a positive influence for Wright County citizens. Growth is inevitable, is happening, and won’t disappear. Growth can be guided and should not be feared. Citizens are showing more family values, sharing quality time and volunteering. People want to shop, work and play, near home. All businesses, from farming to manufacturing, need a level playing field. My positive outlook and vision for the future will ensure that all citizens have their concerns addressed in a timely fashion – fairly and equally.

Conservatism and liberalism are both good. The key is to know when to use each effectively. I will do my best to do that, with my goal being savings for the taxpayers of Wright County.

Our Transportation System, (which includes roads, highways, buses, walks, trails, lakes, rivers, ditches & streams), needs to be 2002 quality. We have to look to the future 20 years and not just next week. Wise investment here will bring safety back to the system long since outdated. Farmers need to get products to town safely. Parents need to safely walk with children to parks. Waterways need to flow. Non-drivers need to be able to get on a bus (that already drives by, usually empty) conveniently, at a bus stop. We agree with everyone else, that the gas tax (user fee) is raised to provide funds. Culverts and bridges in the system need to be matched to those upstream so that our watersheds drain at a pace designed to be as beneficial as possible to citizens and our environment. How long ago should this have happened? We should not be able to predict roads to be covered with water two months out of a year. The problems need to be dealt with now!

Delivery of services can best happen with a cooperative effort with cities and townships and all Wright County departments. We hire the right amount of employees to get timely response to citizens. We train them to our level of need if they do not already have that. We pay them what others in their field are getting in a similar setting. We make sure employee reviews show us what we need to know. We pay close attention to our turnover rate and what is causing it, so that tax dollars spent in training are not benefiting another jurisdiction more than they do us.