Board work: Elected or appointed, public service opportunities abound

No matter where you live in Hood River County, opportunities to serve are right at hand.

As described on page A2, a variety of appointed and elected service opportunities are on the horizon with a variety of local public agencies.

But there will be much more to come.

The filing deadline for local special districts is March 19 for measures to go on the May 19 county special districts election ballot, but by later this week County Elections will have an updated list of open board positions, on its website

County Elections coordinator Kim Kean has been compiling those positions on water, fire, sanitation and other special districts.

These will include positions that naturally come open on a rotating basis, as well as some instances of seats that are unfilled because of resignations — and in some cases that have been vacant since the last election.

Hood River News will continue a running update on positions that are up for election, as well as the ongoing need for people to serve on budget committees and other roles. (Budget committees are a particular need at this time of the year, as agencies including Hood River County School District are setting their calendars and gearing up for that vital work that starts in March and continues in earnest in April and May prior to adoption of budgets in June. There is, to be frank, homework involved in serving on a budget committee.)

Some boards call for an area of expertise or personal or professional background, and such experience can certainly be helpful, but in most cases not having those elements on your resume is not an obstacle to being selected. Serving on a fire or water district requires no particular expertise, just a commitment to serve the public.

There is no getting around the fact that there is a high responsibility placed on special district elected officials, because these are agencies that derive tax revenue to provide vital services. But just about anyone with a concern for the community, and with some time to spare — or the willingness to make that time — can find a way to be an effective servant. Consider doing so now. Your community needs you.

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