Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Response from Vernon Betts, Candidate for Sheriff

1.    What do you view as the key role, and/or attributes needed for this position?  What experience/attributes do you have that qualify you for this position? 

The key role of the Sheriff is to serve and protect the officers, citizens and clients of the 22nd Judicial District of Missouri. The attributes needed for this position is good human relation skills, business skills, knowledge of the laws. What helps me to qualify for this position is my life experiences, education and training as an elementary school teacher of 6 years in St. Louis. I had to be patient, a motivator and planner and have a love for people (children). As a supervisor at AmerenUE for 26 years, 10 of those years in Treasury Department, I have business skills in banking, accounting and leadership. I have education in Law Enforcement and 3 years as a Sheriff Deputy. I have great human relation skills. I serve as a minister in my church. I teach Sunday School for both children and adults. I have served in my community as a Block Captain, President of St. Louis Place Neighborhood Association, tutor and mentor at Matthews Dickey Boys Club. I am certified by the United States Postal Service as an executive Mail Center Manager.

2.    Why do you think you are the best person for this position?  What differentiates you from your opponent(s)?

I do think I am the best person for this position. What differentiates me from my opponent is the higher level of skill, experience, education and determination that I bring to the table. I know I have a greater passion for making St. Louis and the Sheriff Department a better place than my opponents. I worked as a Sheriff Deputy for 3 years in several different assignments so I have a better knowledge and understanding of the needs of this department. I know the personnel, the problems and what is needed to fix those problems. I am younger and more energetic.

3.    What do you feel are the most pressing issues currently facing this office and what plans do you have to address these issues? (please be specific)

The most pressing issue facing this office is like most businesses today, staying within the budget. Providing a livable wage and benefits for the employees and maintaining a safe environment for the Courts, Citizens and Clients that use the court system. I have a plan to address issues, seek grants to raise money and eliminate waste and unnecessary positions, streamline my staff and become more efficient through training and use of Technology, to become more proactive when it comes to safety, have a fair and equitable pay scale and promotions for all employees and to establish a Citizens Advisory Council.

4.    Describe how you work with, or will work with, others to address your priorities.

Well, you have meetings with the people you need to meet with. Give the explanation of your priorities and explain the benefits of your system or plan and how it will improve the Department and make work a better place for all. You ask your team for input. When they are a part of the plan or solution they will be willing to work with you. I plan to meet with my staff weekly. Meet with the judges and other court and law officials on a regular basis.  I would also meet with the community to give and get information. That is how I would address working with others on my priorities.

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