Rotary club to host Klamath County candidate forums

Klamath Falls, Ore. – A field of 16 candidates are in the running for 3 positions in Klamath County’s May primary, and the Klamath County Rotary Club is hosting three separate candidate forums to help voters make their decision.

The first forum will be held March 17th, featuring candidates for Klamath County Sheriff. Those candidates include currently Chief Deputy Martin Rowley, Sheriff’s Sergeant Steve Lewis, and Oregon State Police veteran Chris Kaber.

Kate Marquez of Klamath County Rotary notes that all forums will be held at Reames Country Club on Thursdays at noon. “Each candidate makes an opening statement, answers a question that they’ve been given, and then it’s questions from the audience,” said Marquez.

A forum will be held March 31st for candidates running for the County Commissioner position now held by Jim Bellet. Challengers include Derrick DeGroot of Klamath Falls, Firefighter Dusty Turner, Retired veteran David Carpenter, Business owner Steve Ball, and Dennis Vader of Bonanza. “We have important positions that are open.” said Marquez. “And we all need an opportunity to see them.”

A third and final candidates forum will be held April 21st for the commissioner position now held by Tom Mallams. Challengers include business manager Donnie Boyd, Lyncho Ruiz of Klamath Falls, political newcomer James Williamson, businessman Cark Pfeiffer, M. Sean Manion of Chiloquin, and business owner Pati Horton.

“We’ve invited every candidate, which is a lot of candidates, and they have all said that they are coming,” added Marquez.

If a single candidate earns 50% or more of the vote in any of these primary races, they’ll run unopposed in November. If no candidates capture 50% of the vote, the top 2 candidates will then square off in the November general election.

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