The three-member Brown County Commissioners will have one new member in January.

Dave Anderson
Dave Anderson
Jerry Pittman
Jerry Pittman

Incumbent Republican commissioner Dave Anderson beat Democrat challenger James Oliver 5,023 to 2,825 to retain his seat.

Republican Jerry Pittman — currently on the county council — beat Democrat Tricia Bock 4,905 to 2,924. Pittman had defeated incumbent Republican Joe Wray in the primary.

“I’m pleased, obviously,” Anderson said of his reelection. “I’ve felt all along like we’ve done a decent job.”

“It’s kind of humbling, really,” Pittman said of his win. “I’m glad the people have that much confidence in me, and I will certainly take the job seriously, as I have the position on the council.”

Anderson said he would fulfill his campaign promise of pushing for discussion on the future of the historic county courthouse, “sometime after the first of the year.”

Pittman also promised a discussion. “We have a lot of things to do and not a lot of money to do it with,” he said. “We’re going to have to do some work at the courthouse one way or the other.”

Work would include trying to find ways to bring it into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and security concerns, both candidates said.

Most importantly, it would be guided by public input.

“The people have got to decide that,” Anderson said.

Pittman said public input is needed on all issues. He encourages Brown Countians to reach out to him by any means to let him know what they think needs to be done.

Pittman said since he is semi-retired, he intends to have office hours at the County Office Building several days a week, trading off with Anderson and incumbent county commissioner Diana Biddle.

Anderson said he would like to continue efforts to bring county employee compensation on par with surrounding counties.

He said he is happy with progress the county has made on paving roads. However, he is displeased with the delay in getting payment from the state for the repair of detours like on Valley Branch Road. With more state road work and detours planned, Anderson said the commissioners will have to be vigilant to make certain the state holds up its side of agreements.

Anderson also said he would like to see attendance at commissioner meetings grow again. He said he’s missed the public participation that grew during contentious discussions but has shrunken since then.

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Ben Kibbey is a Brown County transplant from the cornfields of central Ohio. He covers county government, business, outdoors, sports and general news.