Sean Conway retains his seat as an at-large member of the Board of Weld County Commissioners
November 12, 2016
Weld County Commissioner Sean Conway will get to serve a final term in his at-large seat.
The Republican incumbent beat his Democrat challenger, Joe Perez, 63.4 percent to 36.6 percent, according to final unofficial results.
"The fact that they still want… to see me for another four years, it's just very humbling," Conway said. "I'm going to do what I've done for he last eight years starting at 6:30 tomorrow morning."
He talked about when he was first elected in 2008, Weld County was dealing with tough economic times. In his first term, they had to cut the budget by $20 million, unemployment was over 11 percent in the county, and Weld led the nation in foreclosures.
Now, he said, the county is building highways, starting scholarship programs and leading regional transportation efforts.
This will be Conway's third and final term.
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Although he has many priorities for his final term, two of his major focuses are the Weld County Road 49 project and Bright Futures scholarship program.
The project — which expands the road to four lanes from U.S. 34 to Interstate 76 — will give Weld County residents another option when driving to Denver. It kicked off during his tenure.
It should be complete at the end of 2017, and Conway wants to see it through, he said in an earlier interview.
Conway was one of the commissioners who pushed for the Bright Futures program, which supplies Weld's high school graduates, veterans and GED-earners $3,000 annually to go to school. Donors pitch into the scholarship fund, and Weld incentivizes donors with a property tax break.
Finding funding hasn't been easy. More than 1,000 Weld students used it this year. Leaders will have to find a way to get new donors and to keep old ones on board.
Conway said he wants to stay on the board to ensure the program becomes sustainable, he said in an earlier interview.
Transportation is another one of the commissioner's focus areas.
He was the North Front Range Metropolitan Planning Organization chairman last year. The board is made up of local government representatives who deal with transportation and the air quality planning processes.
Perez ran as a Democrat to be on a five-member board that was totally Republican.
Many of the issues commissioners handle are nonpartisan in nature, Perez said in an earlier interview. Regardless, getting a Democrat on the board would lead to more balanced decisions and give a voice to the county's political minority, he said.
"My opponent, Joe Perez, is someone I really respect," Conway said. "He is committed to our community. I'd be remiss if I didn't thank him."