MARICOPA — Jeff McClure has decided to make a bid for District 4 Supervisor for Pinal County in 2020, and is currently unopposed. He is vying for the seat of current supervisor for District 4 Anthony Smith, a former mayor of Maricopa who announced earlier this year he is not running for re-election.
McClure may not be from Arizona originally, but he’s tried his best to make Pinal County his home. McClure, originally from Texas, has served as a member on Oracle School District Governing Board for the last seven years, five of which he has been president for. He also served as precinct committeeman and state committeeman for the Pinal County Republican Party.
McClure stressed that his time on the board had shown him how to budget on limited resources, and that budgeting was a large part of his platform.
“When you continue to add ongoing expenses, and you have an issue like we did in 2008 where the economy drops, you have a real problem,” McClure said. “You have to start getting rid of those expenses. In many cases, that’s employees and it’s programs that you’re carrying. And that’s a problem. So we have to be mindful of the way dollars being spent. That’s really my thing, is more of a budgeting issue.”
Budgeting isn’t the only thing that being on the board has taught McClure, though. McClure also believes that under the current board’s administration, communication has improved greatly within the district.
“When I came on the board, the community was very frustrated with the school district, and the school district was frustrated with the community. There was a lack of communication,” McClure said. “So we went in and changed that, and started to talk to the community and get the community talk to us. And we changed the persona of this district. We even created enough trust that they supported our bond measure this year and our override, which is pretty good in a retired community with no kids.”
Some specific issues McClure hopes to work on should voters select him for District 4 Supervisor is developing the eastern side of the district as well as working with other members of the board of supervisors for the betterment of Pinal County.
“We’ve got a lot of economic development happening in the county,” McClure said. “I worry some about the east side of the county, the copper corridor area which is not my district, per se, but I worry about this area because you’ve got the strike at the mine. You’ve got mines maybe closing. I mean, I don’t know what’s going on. Population is dropping in all the little towns in the corridor. They’re getting kind of ghosty actually, it’s really scary. So, what kind of economic development can we bring to the eastern side of the county? I have to work with the other supervisors to make something happen.”
Fresh from his successes on the board in passing the override, and currently running alone in the race for supervisor, McClure is feeling hopeful about his chances at securing the role.
“I feel pretty confident at the moment,” McClure said. “I mean, certainly not to just be way out there and be too overconfident, but I have a very good backing from my local community. I feel that I have backers in Maricopa as well.”
That backing from the local community goes back to McClure’s earlier point about communication being key, which is part of his platform.
“I like people so I like talking to people — getting to know them, get to know how they work, what works for them in the community,” McClure said.
McClure, who lives in Eagle Crest Ranch, is backed by his wife, Barbara McClure, as well as his three adult sons and a grandchild.