Onslow County Board of Commissioners candidates were sent questionnaires by The Daily News in advance of the Nov. 6 mid-term election. Three candidates are running for two open seats, which were recently added as part of a board expansion. Profiles run on JDNews.com in their entirety and unedited. One-stop voting begins Oct. 17 and Election Day is Nov. 6.

Name: Tim Foster

City of birth: Jacksonville

Seeking: Seat on the Onslow County Board of Commissioners

Affiliation: Republican

Incumbent: No

Best way for voters to contact you: email: timfoster4onslowcommissioner@ec.rr.com

Why are you running for this office? Onslow County is my home; it always has been, and Onslow County was instrumental during my developmental years. My family, a family of service, instilled in me early on its importance, and I want to serve my home. Our county is a great place to live, work, and raise a family. I want to ensure our county remains a great place to live, to work, and to raise a family in the future. If we can do that, my sons and my future grandchildren and yours will choose to call Onslow County home too.

What makes you a good candidate? First, as a lifetime resident of Onslow County, I know Onslow County. I have worked for Onslow County Schools for 27 years as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, and principal. I serve on the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Board of Directors where decisions are made which impact all North Carolina student athletes from the mountains to the coast. I also serve on the advisory board for State Employees Credit Union, Highway 17 branch. I am president of the Onslow County Principal and Assistant Principal Association. I am also the former second vice-chair for the Onslow County Republican Party. In these roles I have worked with people, communicated with people, managed personnel, and developed budgets for the expenditure of our state’s tax dollars.

What is the biggest issue facing Onslow County? Growth. Onslow County continues to grow which creates concerns. The need for additional resources in our school system has only intensified since the storm, and the need was considerable prior to it. The growth of the county impacts the sheriffs’ office, the hospital authority, and emergency services as well. Growth impacts all areas of the county, and we need to find a means to meet the needs of our citizens; the previously mentioned areas are the most visible and often the costliest. How will we support this growth without raising taxes while understanding we have a limited tax base? While growth is a concern, it can also be very positive and attract business and industry that will help produce the needed funds to address the issues related to growth.

How will you address the drug epidemic facing Onslow County? The current Board of Commissioners has allocated funds for a new crisis/treatment facility for mental health scheduled to open in the near future. I will support the continued funding of the crisis/treatment center, work with the current board to address the needs of our population and the needs of Trillium Health Resources, and I will work to ensure Onslow County has a means to provide post-crisis support. But the issue is two-fold; we must ensure our law enforcement has adequate resources to address the issue as well, and law enforcement and Onslow County Schools can work together to enhance drug education programs in our schools. We must continue to work with and find additional community organizations to partner with in order to provide post-treatment and/or post incarceration to support individuals as they transition back to society.

If elected, what would you do to stay transparent as an elected official? Being available to the public I represent is essential. I will provide the people of Onslow County the opportunity to communicate with me their concerns and needs via email, phone, and in person. I will encourage our citizens to attend Onslow County’s Board of Commissioners meetings, to visit the Onslow County Government website where meeting agendas and minutes are posted, and to tune in to G-10, the Onslow County Government channel if citizens are unable to attend the meetings in person. Meetings can also be viewed through Facebook Live as well.

Is there anything else you’d like to add? I believe education is the key to economic development in Onslow County, that county agencies must be appropriately funded, that a treatment facility is needed to address the addiction/mental health crisis and post-crisis support, and that budgetary decisions must be addressed in a fiscally responsible manner. I am asking you the voter to support me knowing I will work for the citizens of Onslow County.