By Kathryn Reed
MEYERS – A contrast in styles is the overwhelming difference between the two El Dorado County District 5 supervisor candidates.
Kenny Curtzwiler is animated and passionate. He talks about how he goes to all the events in town, how people come to him with their problems and how he will get things done.
Sue Novasel is more reserved and thoughtful in her approach. She talks about building consensus, needing to count to three and being a team player.
On July 29 they spoke to an audience of about 50 people at the California Conservation Corps offices about county issues and why they should be the next supervisor to represent Tahoe in Placerville.
Members of Tahoe Regional Young Professionals started the questioning before the public questions were asked. The first was: What would your top three priorities be as supervisor?
“The top three are basically the same for me. It’s community involvement,” Curtzwiler said. “The community is what makes it a community.”
Novasel said her priorities are economic vitality, fire safety and public safety, which include mental health.
When it comes to the Meyers Area Plan, Novasel said, “It still needs some tweaking.” But she did not elaborate. The questioning panel did not ask a follow up question.
Curtzwiler said he likes the Meyers plan.
“I read the entire Catalyst project. It’s good, but it’s too big for the community,” Curtzwiler said. “There is another project out there if the community knew about it, they would like it.”
He didn’t elaborate and the questioning panel didn’t press him further.
They were asked how they are involved in the community.
“I attend almost every single community event,” Curtzwiler said. He said through his business he donates time and resources to various causes.
Curtzwiler also said he is involved with Christmas Cheer.
Novasel was more specific with her involvement – Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care, 12 years on the Lake Tahoe Unified School District board, Lake Tahoe Community College Foundation, Soroptimist International South Lake Tahoe and Lake Tahoe South Shore Chamber of Commerce board (one of the event sponsors).
Curtzwiler was asked to clarify something he had written about the morality of breaking a contract. He said it was about Heavenly Mountain Resort not paying its fair share of taxes to South Lake Tahoe; that he believes the contract should be broken by the city.
Novasel countered, saying, “You have a moral obligation when you have a contract. If something needs to be changed, you do so through legal channels. You work with your board.”
When a member of the public asked about county’s Charter review committee, neither candidate had a firm grasp of what it is or why they should care about it.
When it comes to infrastructure, Novasel wants to see roads and broadband. She believes recreation is the “lifeblood” of the area.
Curtzwiler doesn’t believe it’s the county’s job to provide Internet. He also believes recreation should be No. 1.
Curtzwiler said he is not asking for people’s vote, but instead for their vote of confidence and accountability. He wants to be the first person people call when they need something.
Novasel said she is asking for people’s vote. She plans to listen more than talk, and she said she will build consensus.
The election is Nov. 4.