LYON COUNTY SHERIFF – GREGORY KANTZ
These interviews are being posted on NewsDesk by Nancy Dallas (www.ndbynd.com) . Reposting of any interview by interested parties must include the disclaimer the interview was originally posted in this publication. Questions or comments may be directed to Nancy Dallas at firstname.lastname@example.org or 775-847-0129.
There are four candidates in this Primary race. The two candidates receiving the most votes will face off in the General Election. Steve Adams did not respond to the interview request. Greg Kantz, Al McNeil and Albert Torres participated. The interviews will be posted in alphabetical order.
Facebook Page: kantz4sheriff
1. Give a brief summation of your professional and political background.
I have never run for a political office in the past other than accepting positions with various community groups. Professionally I offer a well-rounded background as a business person, business owner, and law enforcement professional.
In my business life I have been an area manager for a hospitality group with total employees ranging from 400 to 500 individuals. Annual sales in my region averaged approximately $12.5 million with an ROI of 12 to 15%. These numbers were during good and lean years and were accomplished by an outstanding team. I’ve had a number of real estate holdings and continue to be a small business owner at this time.
With law enforcement I’ve served honorably within Utah Department of Corrections for over one year. I spent approximately 7 years with the Utah Highway Patrol and served in numerous capacities including general patrol functions, 2002 Olympic law enforcement, and worked with the Governor in the uniformed division. I’ve been with the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office for approximately 7 years working in the patrol division and within the Lyon County Schools teaching the G.R.E.A.T. program.
At 52 years of age my background is very well suited to serve as your Sheriff. I entered law enforcement in my late 30’s as compared to the other candidates who have never worked in the private sector for any extended period of time.
2. Why are you running for this position?
I am running for this position in order to make a difference. I entered law enforcement for the same reason – to make a difference. This agency needs to have elements of private sector and critical thinking brought into it in order to benefit the citizens of Lyon County. While serving and protecting we must improve our customer / citizen service.
3. What makes you more qualified to serve in this position than your opponents?
This race is not about being more qualified than the other candidates, it’s about choosing the right fit for our county. Three of us in this race, Kantz, Adams, and McNiel are uniquely qualified in our own way. The fourth, Torres, is not even close to being qualified, he’s a living example of the “Peter Principle”.
I believe my direction and guidance in the office is what will make the difference with the voters.
4. What do you expect to spend on this campaign? Do you intend to spend your own money? To what degree?
I’ve spent about $5000.00 so far and plan to spend another 3 to 4 thousand through the general election. This is my own money.
5. What are the three to four most challenging issues facing the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office?
The challenging issues facing the department today are: Staffing, Leadership, Funding, and Moral. Status quo and “Good Old Boys” can not continue to exist.
6. It is not arguable the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office needs additional staffing. Where is the greatest need for staffing increases and how would you intend to utilize new personnel?
Staffing is needed. Any new or additional staff would go right to patrol in the neighborhoods and also into the jail. It’s needed in both areas. The term “New Personnel” has a nice sound to it but it’s also how the existing personnel is allocated. By getting a number of existing personnel out from behind desks we can quickly achieve the same thing as new personnel.
7. Can staffing increases be made within the current Sheriff’s budget? Explain.
Staffing increases cannot be achieved within the current budget. Some say you could by reducing overtime. The nature of our 24 / 7 operation means that overtime could be better managed but it’s part of the business. In order to increase the number of staff you need to increase funding.
8. The Lyon County crime rate has increased considerably. What strategies will you develop to lower the overall county crime rate?
My strategy is simple, put the right people in the right positions and get desk jockeys out in the neighborhoods.
9. How would you intend to create an atmosphere of public trust and confidence between the citizens and Lyon County law enforcement?
Again, a simple strategy. Customer / Citizen driven great performance. Get the bodies visible in public, get them out from behind desks and into the neighborhoods and businesses. Good old fashioned cop on the street.
10. With the reality of dealing with gangs and narcotic related type crimes becoming increasingly challenging and threatening to our quality of life, how do you propose to deal with these issues the next 4 years?
ZERO tolerance in both areas. Let it be known Lyon County will not tolerate either gangs or drugs. Put manpower into these areas and hold them accountable. If you make something a priority it will get done. Don’t forget the courts and the District Attorney play key roles in the success of the operation. I will ask the citizens of Lyon County to take an active roll along with the courts and the D.A. so we can make this successful.
11. In your opinion, what is the public image of the Sheriff’s Office in the eyes of Lyon County residents?
I love this question. After campaigning for a period of time I would put the image at 50 / 50. The public is very understanding as far as limited manpower and with the need to prioritize calls. One thing the public will not and should not ever stand for is rudeness.
12. Do you believe there is a need for costly improvements/changes made in regards to the operation of the new jail facility? Explain.
I believe there is no need for costly improvements or changes in the jail. It’s built, staff it and operate it. We could go round and round on where it should have been located but the damage has already been done.
13. It has been an ongoing debate as to whether deputies should be allowed to take department vehicles home or not. What is your position on this issue?
The current policy on take home vehicles is adequate and I would not reduce the number of take home cars. The nature of work and the way business needs to be conducted is sometimes not fully understood by the citizenry. Your vehicle is your office and one of the tools required to do the job in the most efficient manner. I would look closely at who takes a vehicle home. The positions I refer to as desk jockeys do not need to be taking home a vehicle.
14. What efforts, if any, would you take to make the Sheriff’s Office a presence within our public schools?
This would be one of my top priorities. We need to be in the schools. Having been in the schools myself I can tell you first hand the benefits far exceed the cost. Being in the schools provides us the opportunity to offer a supporting role in the community and present law enforcement in a better light.
15. If there is an issue of concern to you that has not been addressed in your responses above, here is your chance to elaborate.
Thank you for reading and considering my positions on the questions. I would truly appreciate your support and confidence in me as your Sheriff. In politics, candidates tend to say what the people want to hear. I say what I believe needs to be said and lead the way a leader needs to lead. I have been a registered independent for a number of years and consider myself a true conservative. I ask you to give this election some thought and don’t let politics play into it. You have three good candidates to choose from and I’m asking for your support.