Candidacy: District 1 Ouray County Commissioner, Republican
Occupation: Third-generation farmer/rancher on Log Hill Mesa
Family: Wife Marty; four children; lives on Log Hill Mesa
Prior Government Experience: Flowers has served on Ouray County’s Right-to-Farm Agricultural Review Board and the Tri-County Water Conservancy District Board; currently is an active member of the Colorado Weed Advisory Board.
Flowers announced his candidacy in February 2012 at the annual Ouray County Cattlemen’s Association banquet. A third-generation rancher, he lives on the family place on Log Hill with his wife Marty and their younger children Dawson and Darshawn. His daughter Amanda Flowers is on the Ouray County Fair Board.
Flowers played a key role in merging three competing boards on which he was serving – the Consumer Oil Co-op, Montrose Co-op and Producers (Potato Growers) Co-op – and says he would look for similar efficiencies and opportunities for cooperation at the county level.
He is a member of the Tri-County Water Conservancy District Board, the entity which is overseeing the $12 million hydroelectric project at the Ridgway Reservoir Dam.
Flowers has seen a lot of changes over the years in Log Hill and Ridgway – “Some good, and some bad.” He said he wants to make sure that agriculture continues to be a viable way of life in Ouray County.
On the issue of private property rights, he doesn’t think that “government needs to regulate us to death.”
Flowers, if elected, would not support expanding the Sneffels Wilderness Area as part of the stalled San Juan Mountain Wilderness Area proposal. “Five percent of our state is already in Wilderness and I believe that is enough,” he said. “We don’t need to add any more Wilderness. I’m not sure what’s being damaged or what we need to protect. What are we trying to save?”
Flowers supports the visual impact regulations that are currently in place in Ouray County, and doesn’t see the need to add new ones. “I’m an old cowboy so I do want to see the valley stay the way it is,” he said. “I like seeing cows there and guys putting the hay up. The zoning laws are protecting our valley and that’s good.”
No matter who wins the BOCC race for District 1 in Ouray County, it will likely leave a long-lasting legacy of division as the community has become polarized around two very different candidates. On that issue, Flowers said, “I am kind of new to this political game. I haven’t had a whole lot of experience, but I sold hay to Democrats and Republicans. The way we will solve problems as they come up is to sit down and talk face to face. I’ll bet a dollar that if we sat down and visited we’d discover we have a lot of the same things in common.”
Regrettably, Flowers did not have time to sit down and visit with The Watch before the deadline for this publication, although he did indicate a willingness to talk after things settle down at hunting camp and gathering his calves to get to market. The information provided here comes from public statements Flowers made at recent candidate forums, as well as from his website and campaign literature and Watch archives.
• Supports private property rights.
• Supports sound conservation and land management practices.
• Wants more focus placed on improving and maintaining county roads.
• Supports a balanced approach to economic development that includes mining, agriculture, clean industry and tourism.
• Supports protecting local historic water rights.
• Does not support the San Juan Wilderness Bill.
• Supports leaving Visual Impact Regulations the way they are.