Seat of the County Commissioner of the Town of Saginaw, township up for grabs in the election

SAGINAW, MI — Two newcomers will pursue District 10’s seat on the Saginaw County Board of Commissioners this fall.

Voters will choose between Democrat Lisa Coney and Republican Jason Wise in the general election on Tuesday, November 8. The winner will get a 2-year term on the 11-member council that oversees Saginaw County government.

Both candidates ran unopposed in the August primary election, when Coney garnered 1,312 votes and Wise 1,068 votes.

Coney works as a social worker and Wise is acting police chief in Zilwaukee.

District 10 covers 16,582 voters in parts of the City and Township of Saginaw. The neighborhood is west of I-675 and includes Fashion Square Mall and much of the shopping district south of the mall.

A redistricting process last October reset county district boundaries, and those new boundaries will come into effect after the November election. No current members of the Board of Commissioners reside in the new District 10, which led to the showdown this fall between the newcomers.

The soon-to-be-obsolete District 10 is currently represented by Carl Ruth, the outgoing Board Chair who resides in the new District 2.

MLive/The Saginaw News has partnered with the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Michigan to provide candidate information to readers. Each candidate was asked to state their positions on a variety of public policy issues listed below.

Coney and Wise responded.

All answers in the voter guide were submitted directly by the candidate and have not been edited by the League of Women Voters, except for necessary clipping if an answer exceeded character limits. Spelling and grammar have not been corrected. The publication of candidates’ statements and opinions is in the interest of public service only and should not be considered an endorsement. The League never supports or opposes candidates or political parties.

Information on other state, county and local primary races can be found at

voter guide promotion

Describe your background, life/work experience and qualifications for this office and why you are running.

Coney: I am applying for this position because as a public servant who has strong ties to my community, I want to help build a better, inviting, innovative and inclusive Saginaw. I have over three decades of public service and three decades of community involvement and have served on several professional and county boards.

Wise: I hold a masters degree in public administration with 23 years in law enforcement. During my career, I was drawn into computer forensics, working in a task force protecting children online. I was deployed to New York during 9/11, working in tower two with my K-9 partner, Sally. My whole career has been focused on helping victims get justice in court.

What are the priority issues facing this office and what steps would you take to address them if elected?

Coney: As a school social worker, I have heard countless times that students want to “leave Saginaw” after graduation. A number of factors they cited are lack of well-paying job opportunities, lack of affordable housing in safe neighborhoods, and opportunities for recreation. These concerns expressed by students are a top priority. My plan is to work with local unions to advocate for entry-level jobs with decent pay. Work with the local housing commission (current council member) to create affordable housing (rebuild and/or build new) in safe neighborhoods. Additionally, I will partner with county and/or community organizations to create opportunities for family fun recreational events.

Wise: I think the main issues need to be resolved.

Taxpayers’ money: I care about how our tax dollars are collected, managed and spent. Safety: I care about the safety of our citizens by supporting our firefighters, doctors and law enforcement. I promise to investigate medical response times and explore options that can reduce call times. Mental Health: Review federal grants to provide federal funds to assist mental programs throughout Saginaw County. Businesses: Attract new development by offering incentives.

Lisa Coney

Lisa Coney is running for Saginaw County Board of Commissioners in 2022.

Jason Sage

Jason Wise is a Republican candidate for Saginaw County Board of Commissioners in 2022.

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