Dubuque County Supervisor Jay Wickham would like to continue the work he’s accomplished over the past two years serving on the three-member board.
Wickham, 52, of rural Dubuque, touted the board’s successes with him as chairman. That includes lowering the fiscal year 2019 tax asking for the county without making any cuts to normal services.
“It’s the first time we’ve had a significant reduction in that tax levy in about 20 years,” he said. “And so to be the lead of that and the chair of the board as we determined that reduction, I think that’s significant.”
Wickham is one of three Democrats running for two seats on the three-member board. He will face challengers Ann McDonough and Roger Oberbroeckling in the June 5 primary election. The top two candidates will appear on the Nov. 6 general election ballot, where they will face Republican Curt Kiessling.
Wickham was appointed to the board in March 2016 to fill the seat of the late Supervisor Tom Hancock. Wickham won the November 2016 election to serve the rest of Hancock’s term.
Wickham’s professional experience includes being co-founder of software firm Cartegraph. He is currently the regional director for the Small Business Development Center at Northeast Iowa Community College.
He said this experience is helpful when ensuring fiscal responsibility in the county’s budget. He also was the county’s liaison in negotiating an incentive package that kept furniture manufacturer Flexsteel Industries in Dubuque. The company is building a new facility on Seippel Road.
He noted ongoing construction of a new county road maintenance campus, which has an estimated cost of about $17 million. This will replace outdated shop facilities off Seippel Road, as well as serve as a new office building for the county engineering, zoning, health and assessor departments.
Wickham said as he’s been meeting with voters, he’s heard mostly positive feedback about the direction of the county and the board’s performance.
“Most citizens want the government just to exist and function well,” he said. “And then allow it to serve them when it needs to serve them, and then not want to think about it.”
Wickham said he shares county news through his Facebook page and a monthly radio show. He said he, like his fellow supervisors, prides himself on being accessible to constituents through sharing cell phone numbers on the county website.
He would like to continue offering his skills to the county.
“I think I have the right background in the private sector and the general good judgment Dubuque County citizens would expect,” he said.