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State Senate: Q&A with Chester Crandell of Heber
7/10/2012 2:34:00 PM
By Steve Ayers
Republican Chester Crandell was first elected to the Arizona Legislature in 2010 as a representative from the old legislative District 5. He currently serves on the Education, Environment and Agriculture Water committees.
Prior to his election to the legislature, Crandell served as the superintendent for the Northern Arizona Vocational Institute of Technology Joint Technological Educational district for 10 years. He has also been a lobbyist for educational interest.
Crandell has a Bachelor's degree in Agricultural Education from the
University of Arizona
and a Masters in Educational Leadership from NAU.
He is retired but ranches on property his family has owned for 5 generations in Heber.
Question: With Legislative Dist. 6 aligning the Verde Valley with Flagstaff, what is your position on the long-standing Verde-Prescott conflict over pumping water from the Big Chino aquifer? Many residents of the Verde Valley have long opposed the pumping. How do you intend to deal with the problem?
Answer: Serving as co-chair of the Ag. and Water Committee has allowed me to participate in many discussions on water rights issues.
There was a bill passed this year to set up a state study committee to examine Macro-Water Harvesting as a viable option to help in solving the water shortage problem in Arizona.
Specific to dealing with the Verde-Prescott conflict, I will need to get more information as to what has been done and what currently is happening, then work toward a compromise for all.
Question: Why and how will the Verde Valley be better served in Legislative District 6 vs. the former alignment that paired the Verde Valley with the Prescott area and kept Yavapai County in a single district?
Answer: An independent redistricting committee created LD 6. I am not sure that they were concerned as to why or how the people of the Verde Valley would be better served.
All I can say is that I will listen to the people of the Verde Valley and rely on my rural experience to serve the people the best I can.
Question: The Arizona Legislature has proposed various plans for consolidation of school districts in Arizona. What is your position on school district consolidation and specifically how it relates to the Verde Valley where there are five school districts and three of those districts govern just one school each?
I firmly believe in local control for school districts. In my opinion the only part the state should play in a local school district is to set the standards and pay for that outcome, then get out of the way and let parents, teachers and school boards get the job done. I believe the state would get better results with less regulation.
Question: What is your legislative agenda as it relates to the Verde Valley?
Answer: The only agenda I have for the Verde Valley is to listen to the people and deal with issues that arise. It is my opinion that if any legislator tries to represent a new district with a preconceived agenda, they are asking for trouble.
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