Candidates offer reason for seeking office

First Posted: 10/25/2009

Ron Atkins, 58, of has been a resident of Dobson for 25 years.
Owner of Images photography studio located in Dobson, he has been married to Dixie Cook for 25 years. They have three children, Steven, Sarah and Shane.
Atkins graduated from North Surry High school in 1969. He was paramedic for 20 years with Surry County Emergency Services. Atkins took continuing education courses at Surry Community College.
He is chairman of the board of director of the Lowgap Wildlife Club and has been a member of Round Peak Masonic Lodge for 30 years.

Here are Atkins responses to a series of questions posed to board of commissioner candidates in Dobson to allow voters to learn about their positions in preparation for the election on Nov. 3. There are two seats on the board available with six candidates.

Question: Why did you decide to run for office?
Answer: Ive been living here in Dobson for 25 years with the family. My business is here. Ive been doing photography. I love the people. For the last two years things have improved here so much. Beautification wise, any way you come into our town it looks good, our new signs, the buildings that have been torn down and straightened up and the landscaping is beautiful. Its a big difference in how it was 25 years ago and I said, Man, I want to be a part of this. I dont want us to fall back any, I want us to go forward. Thats really the reason, I want to be part of it. Its looking good and I just dont want to see it fall back.
Question: What would be your top three priorities of you are elected to office?
Answer: One big thing with me as I said when we first started is water and sewer. Its a big concern of mine. Its wonderful when you drive outside the city limits into the county you see the water lines going in. Thats wonderful. Its great for the people. I think the town needs to continue with the partnership with the county. In the wintertime, every other morning on the way to the office I see the town out here digging up the street … because of burst lines. We are really going to have to address this water and sewer problem just right here in our town.
Another thing, is something down the road that we are going to have to think about, but its closer than it has been and thats annexation. Thats something we are going to have to address and its coming. We need it for the tax base, we really do.
Theres a lot of different things Id love to see. Our Fisher River Park is wonderful, but as I got home in the afternoon at 5 or 6 oclock and you pass the square out here, theres people walking because its the only place they got here in town. And its wonderful that we have that, but Id love to see a little mini half-mile track for those people. I want to continue with beautification. I think the sidewalks are looking a lot better over the past two years. Were replacing some, were repairing. Id love to see us continue to do that. That means a whole lot to me the sidewalks. Just curb appeal, we need that too.
Question: Why do you think you deserve this office?
Answer: Im going to listen. Im just one of the people out here. I can do nothing without their help. I need their input. We all need their input. If they have a problem if I hold the office, they can come to me. I will listen and try to help anyway that I can. Not just tell them, but Im going to listen. We need to start living up to what we tell the people. Thats why they are not involved here like they should be. People just dont take an interest. Theyve been throwed and told so much and not followed through.
Question: What will you do to increase community involvement?
Answer: I think if somebody has got something on their mind and you will sit down and listen, have them come to a meeting and present it and discuss things with them and just get involved.
Question: Are you for or against the proposed curfew for teens younger than age 18?
Answer: No … I just think its just stepping on toes and its going against the right to be out there. If he wants to go to a restaurant or to pick up a drink, to get fuel at 11 oclock. A lot of nights I will go out and get fuel because its not as crowded. So dont tell me I cant go and get fuel or go get a soda. We are just telling people so much that they cant do.

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