SANDPOINT — Steve Bradshaw, pastor of the Cocolalla Cowboy Church, is announcing his candidacy for the District 1 seat on the Bonner County Commission.
The District 1 seat is currently occupied by Commissioner Glen Bailey.
As a pastor, Bradshaw said it is time that he takes part in the community and gets involved.
"I believe it starts at the local level if we are going to make a difference," he said. "If we are going to lead then we have to lead."
Bradshaw and his wife Cindy have lived in Bonner County since 1988, and started the church in 2002.
His two sons graduated from Sandpoint High School, he said, and one attended Lewis and Clark State College while the other went to Idaho State University. Both married locally, and Bradshaw now has five grandchildren.
Some of the issues in the county Bradshaw said he would like to address if elected include planning and zoning, as well as county spending. While some decisions may have been good decisions at the time they were made, he said, they should be looked at again "a little closer."
"You have to weigh in cause and effect and unintended consequences, and I think sometimes those are overlooked," Bradshaw said. "I've been serving people most of my life and now I'm going to serve my community. I believe we can bring moral judgment and decisions with the reality of available funds."
Bradshaw said he intends to be careful about making any "hollow promises." He has watched it for more than 30 years, he said, as commissioners, city council members and others running for office make promises they can't keep.
"Those options are not up to them and they're not legally capable of fulfilling those promises," he said, adding that some "may or may not have known that ahead of time."
"So I will be really cautious about saying what I will or won't do, but I will try to serve the community to the best of my ability for the betterment of the community, not for the betterment of the government. I want to bring the government back to being of the people, by the people, and for the people."
In addition to Bailey and Bradshaw's District 1 race, District 3 incumbent Commissioner Dan McDonald is up against former Ponderay mayor Carol Kunzeman, as well as Steve Lockwood, who has served Sandpoint’s Planning and Zoning Commission, the City Council and the Lake Pend Oreille School Board.
March 9 is the deadline for candidates to file for office. Idaho's primary elections are May 15.
Mary Malone can be reached by email at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter @MaryDailyBee.