Republican Ronald Winterton won the State Senate 26 seat. Previously held by Senator Kevin Van Tassell. KPCW Spoke with the newly elected state senator.
Uintah basin resident Ron Winterton comes to Utah’s State senate with years of experience in transportation and local government.
“I spent 30 years in the transportation industry.” Winterton said, “I’ve spent the past 10 years as a county commissioner, working on the ground trying to fight for rural Utah the issues that affect our lives day to day. I’m going to protect the local elected officials. So many times, people get elected to state positions and have no experience in local government at all. That is an area of expertise which I feel I am very good at. I’m going to speak up when I think there is a bill being proposed that could harm us in any way. I look forward to that role. I just see myself as a great advocate for local governments. I’m honored to have been able to be elected and to serve in this district. I hope that we develop a close relationship that people feel that I’m there for them. Again, I look to the local leaders to be the voice of the people because on a state level it’s another level away from the people. I look to people locally to help guide me on the key issues that are very important to your area.”
Senator Winterton said his first priority is getting up to speed and a committee assignment. Winterton met with other Senate leaders on Thursday evening.
“They’ll go through and make the committee assignments this next week to ten days.” Winterton explained, “Once I receive those then I’ll get familiar with what committees that I will be on. That’s my priority right now. I’ve been working with the local leaders, that’s going to continue. This is going to enhance my ability to be more effective or to open a little bit more channels to get things done in all the local leadership. Whether it’s the city council or the county council there. I think I’m going to be a great asset to them.”
Senator Winterton says he’s hopeful to use his experience to help resolve transportation issues in the district.
“That’s one of the assignments I asked for, whether I get it or not we’ll have to wait to see.” Winterton continued, “That’s important to the whole district. Being raised in the transportation area all my life, I think I have a lot to contribute there. I’ll work hard, make sure we get the funding we need to address those concerns. I do have a great relationship with those in region three. Region one I know the people, but I have not sat down with the UDOT people there. I hope to enhance that, to be able to help you guys.”
Senator Winterton says he’s thankful for the opportunity to serve and looks forward to getting to know residents in the Wasatch back.
“I just appreciate the support and people reaching out and being accepting of me.” Winterton said, “I just again feel it a great honor to be able to serve in this capacity and look forward to getting to meet and know a lot of the people there in Summit County.”