BENTONVILLE -- Republican Susan Anglin is seeking a sixth term on the Benton County Quorum Court, but Democrat Jocelyn Lampkin is challenging her for the District 9 seat.
The district covers southeastern Centerton, south Bentonville and unincorporated portions of Benton County. The district's eastern border is Arkansas 279. The northern-most border is Arkansas 102. Its southeastern border is Southwest Regional Airport Boulevard.
Early voting starts Oct. 24. Election Day is Nov. 8.
The Quorum Court is the legislative body of county government and is made up of members called justices of the peace, who are elected to two-year terms. The Benton County Quorum Court has 15 Republicans as members.
The biggest issues that face the county in the next five years will be to provide jail and court space to accommodate growth, the ability to provide continuous ambulance service in the county's rural areas, continuation of volunteer fire service in rural Benton County and retention of employees to continue providing effective and efficient services, Anglin said.
Anglin favors jail expansion, which will be on the Nov. 8 ballot. There has been overcrowding at the jail for several years, she said.
The Quorum Court has heard reports on the jail that indicate a need for more inmate beds and additional space for a variety of items, from laundry service to serving inmates' health needs, she said.
"There are some programs that we would like to see utilized to decrease the number of jail inmates, but more space and employees are needed to manage programs," she said.
Anglin said she is seeking reelection because she loves Benton County and, as a native, wants others to enjoy the great county she has known all her life.
"As we face the issues presented by continuous changes and increasing population growth in Benton County, I believe that my nearly 10-year experience in serving the citizens of Benton County and the knowledge I have gained while serving makes me the best choice for continuing to represent the citizens of District 9," she said.
Lampkin said the biggest issue the county faces is growth. With that comes many issues to consider such as infrastructure, affordable housing, jail expansion and accessible child care, she said.
"The Quorum Court really needs to make themselves known to their constituents and listen to concerns, ideas and questions," she said.
If work were to begin soon on a jail expansion, more beds wouldn't be available for three years, she said.
"With a large focus on adding more beds, I question if there are other options that aren't being considered to keep people out of jail or reduce their service time," she said. "A jail expansion that focuses on rehabilitating criminals with mental health units, stronger work release programs or substance abuse programs to help these individuals so they can be contributors to society, that is something I am certainly in favor of."
Lampkin said said she is running to educate neighbors on the importance of local government, to represent the diverse population in the district and to hold the Quorum Court accountable with the spending of tax dollars.
"I have served on multiple boards of nonprofits in positions where I was responsible for controlling expenses, and I currently work within ethics and compliance," she said. "I believe with my background, I have the capabilities to represent and serve the constituents of District 9 in Benton County as we continue to welcome new people to the area."
Benton County justices of the peace are paid $267 per meeting of the Quorum Court, Committee of the Whole and Finance Committee.
Justice of the Peace
Susan R. Anglin (R)
Residency: Bentonville native, has lived in District 9 for 37 years
Occupation: Beef farmer
Education: Bachelor’s degree in nursing, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Political experience: Benton County Quorum Court, 2013 to present
Jocelyn Lampkin (D)
Residency: Bentonville for 15 years
Occupation: Works in ethics and compliance at Walmart
Education: Bachelor’s degree in professional studies from Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tenn.
Political Experience: None