Chamber hosts local candidates

11 speak at ‘Meet the Candidates’ event

MIFFLINTOWN — The Juniata River Valley Chamber of Commerce hosted a “Meet the Candidates” event for the state representative candidates of the 82nd District, Thursday night.

Rhonda Moore, executive director of the chamber, opened the event with a brief introduction explaining the value and importance of hosting the event.

“Your vote is your voice,” said Moore. “We’re here together so you can hear from all the candidates and get an idea of what they stand for so you can make an educated decision.”

Candidates names were randomly drawn in order to determine the order in which they would present their platforms. Following the drawing, Tracey Powell Markle (R), of Juniata County, was chosen to present first, followed by Josh Fultz (R), of Juniata County, Joseph Ughetto II (R), of Mifflin County, James Junkin (R), of Franklin County, Jerry Leach (R), of Juniata County, Beth Laughlin (R), of Mifflin County, Elizabeth Book (I), of Juniata County, Nicole Sherlock-King (R), of Juniata County, Terrance Shepler (R), of Juniata County, John Hershey (R), of Juniata County and Kim Hart (D), of Juniata County. Each candidate was given approximately ten minutes to introduce themselves and outline the issues they would like to resolve, if elected, as a state representative.

Once presentations were completed, community members were provided with the opportunity to stay after the event to speak personally with the candidates and ask questions.

Several of the candidates explained their intentions to focus on aiding small business and military veterans, as well as lending more focus toward improving school safety and eliminating property tax. The candidates also expressed their desire to run for the state representative position in order to serve, and ultimately improve, their communities.

“I can tell you, the biggest regret that I have in my life is that I never served in the military to serve this country,” said Fultz. “I see this as the best opportunity that I can do to serve you and provide for my community that’s given my family and I so much. As state representative, I will do everything in my power to give us the ability to make our lives, and the lives of our children and grandchildren, better.”

Shepler stated, “The 82nd District is one of high morals, it’s one with a rich history, and I want nothing more than to protect those values for many generations to come. However, if we just preserve, we become complacent and we don’t do anything. That being said, we need to continue to prepare to make sure that our district can compete in the future.”

To vote for a state candidate representative, a closed primary election will be held on May 15, 2018, and the general election will be held on Nov. 6, 2018.