Earlier today, Jan. 31st, Rick Vest announced that he would seek election to the Lancaster County Board of Commissioners in District 5. Vest is a lifelong Nebraskan with deep roots in Lancaster County. In 1974, Vest began his career in the Havelock Shops of the BNSF Railway as a Carman Apprentice. After decades as a Journeyman Carman, Vest was promoted to the General Claims department in 2001, where he worked until his retirement in 2015.
“I’m running for the County Board to bring responsible leadership to our local government,” Vest said. “After a lifetime of residing in Nebraskan communities and working in both factory and office jobs, I understand the values that make our county a great place to live and raise a family. Our community’s values of responsibility, compromise, and common sense will guide me as I serve as County Commissioner.”
In addition to his experiences at BNSF Railway, Vest has a longstanding commitment to serving his community. He was certified by the State of Nebraska in Basic and Family Mediation in 1998 and currently leads the Resolution Center in Beatrice, Nebraska as Chairman. He is a part of the Hospital Visitation Team for the First Plymouth Congregational Church, volunteered as a youth basketball coach for the North American Martyrs, and served as a lay speaker in the United Methodist Church.
Vest highlighted responsible use of government funds, criminal justice reform, and smart infrastructure investment as his primary concerns on the County Board. “Our communities trust local government to use public funds with responsibility and accountability. As a Commissioner, I’ll ensure that citizens are getting what we are paying for: Efficient public services and well-maintained roads and bridges.” This commitment to responsible spending guides Vest’s position on various issues, including criminal justice reform. He is a supporter of programs that would reduce the unnecessary incarceration of nonviolent offenders in county jails. “Promoting rehabilitation over incarceration for nonviolent offenders will lower costs and lessen repeat offenses, balancing our budget and making our community safer at the same time.”
When it comes to infrastructure investment, Vest sees the importance of innovative solutions to the county’s pressing issues. “We need to explore all available funding options for our important infrastructure needs. That includes finding ways to fund public projects without increasing property tax burdens on families and retirees.”
Vest considers consensus-building the defining feature of his public service. “As a County Commissioner, I’ll value the opinions of my colleagues and bring them together to make the very best solutions. On the Board, I’ll be in the business of building bridges between both sides.”
Vest currently lives in Lincoln with his wife, Dawn, and frequently spends time with their 8 children and 18 grandchildren. District 5 of the Lancaster County Board includes Northeast Lincoln, Waverly, and the surrounding rural areas.
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