The mid-term election season is officially under way as evidenced by a number of candidates already throwing their hats into the ring early in the filing process.

Locally, four offices are up for grabs and voters will be asked to decide whether or not the county court positions will remain partisan going forward. At the state level, multiple nonpartisan judicial positions will be decided while local voters will decide who holds the offices of governor and House District 55 representative going forward. At the federal level, the U.S. Senate seat held by Jeff Merkley is up for election after six years.

For Crook County citizens, this is a great time to get involved and help determine the future of not only our community, but our state and nation. The economy may be on the mend, with unemployment dropping and the job market showing modest promise, but we are not out of the woods by any stretch. If the recent town halls hosted by Merkley and fellow Senator Ron Wyden are any indication, local residents still harbor many concerns at every level of government from local to federal.

People are worried about how their forests will be managed, how their health care will be administered, how their water will be provided, and more.

Your elected officials have a stake in these concerns, and those who care about the issues need to get involved, get informed, and pick the person they feel will do the best job.

While we encourage citizens to get involved with their vote, this is not the only way that people can affect the future of their community. They can opt to run for office.

So far, all four local races are fairly open with one candidate having filed for each office. Of those, three feature incumbent candidates only.

We realize it takes courage to run for public office, but for those wanting to make a difference in their community, this could be the most direct way to do so. There is still plenty of time to file for office, with the deadline still nearly two months away.

For those who have concerns about their community, state, and nation, now is the time to take action.

The future of Crook County, the State of Oregon, and the entire country will be determined by the people who get involved and take on a role in moving forward.

The opportuntiy is there. Don't pass it up.

Contract Publishing

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