Ryan Michael White of Rodanthe has filed to run as a Republican for the office of Dare County Sheriff.  He will face off against John Douglas Doughtie in the primary on May 4th.  Here’s a little more about him, in his own words.

ToD: Tell us a little about yourself:

Ryan White: I was born on September 30, 1975 in Zanesville, Ohio.  I spent summers on the Outer Banks as a child with my grandparents, Bill and Rosemary White. I relocated here with my father, Mike White, in 1992.  I graduated from Cape Hatteras School in 1994. I attended the Suzuki Technical School in Atlanta Georgia for marine mechanics after high school.  After school, I continued to work at my family business, Hatteras Jack Inc. In addition to being a mainstay in the fishing community, I furthered my knowledge of the Outer Banks economy by working in local restaurants and for local contractors. I began working full time at Hatteras Jack Inc. in 1999. I became president of Hatteras Jack Inc. during the spring of 2002 after the passing of both my grandfather and father. Today, I continue to carry on the family business

ToD: What are your qualifications and why did you decide to run?

Ryan White: Like many in our community, I know about hard times and adversity. I’ve been there. I am there. I feel I represent Dare County because like all of our citizens, I am honest, straightforward and hard working. I consider myself to be a fair individual, who is approachable and encourage the people I work with and serve to bring me their thoughts and concerns to openly discuss.

I feel I represent the voice of the citizens who believe they are unheard by their government officials. I do not accept the antiquated ways that have created an overbearing governmental authority. I realize the need for a change of common practice in our Sheriff’s Department, a change that will serve the citizens and be fiscally responsible.

ToD: What is the most important issue facing the Sheriff’s Department and how would you tackle it?

Ryan White: In my opinion, there is not one single issue that outweighs the other. It seems that drug law enforcement is a mainstay of the Sheriff’s Department that outweighs many other concerns, where I feel there are even more important subjects that face the county that seemed to be overlooked and ignored. For instance illegal immigration, burglaries, the cost of enforcing minor infractions versus the actual problem the infraction poses, and reviewing the Mutual Aid Agreement with the National Park Service.

I am aware that Dare County is in the midst of a budget deficit that certain practices of the Sheriff’s Department have an immediate affect on.  I would like to see a review of the cost analysis of enforcing many minor offences and weigh the benefit to the county each enforced action posed. I would propose a county marijuana possession and marijuana paraphernalia ‘tax’. Each tax would cost $100 per person, per subject, per year. This tax would be extended to non-residents as well.  Once the tax was paid, it would be recorded, and there would be no charges filed for amounts of one ounce of marijuana or less and/or marijuana paraphernalia discovered on the individual who chooses to pay this yearly tax. I believe this would cut down on staffing, generate revenue to the county, and reduce overscheduled court dockets all reducing the county’s budget deficit.

I feel we should refocus our county Sheriff’s Department agenda into enforcing illegal immigration laws. The legal residents of Dare County should be put first in obtaining the job and housing opportunities. The abundant illegal immigrants have created an imbalance in competition for resources.  I would propose to introduce a voluntary county census, in which the illegal immigrants could come forth and have their presence recorded. At this time they would be enrolled into a county tax collection program that would collect a yearly 30% income ‘tax’. Illegal immigrants that are not recorded to the county will be subject to arrest and will be handed over to the Immigration and Naturalization Service. I would also propose enforcing penalties against employers who knowingly employ illegal immigrants who are not recorded with the county. It is time the citizens of Dare County do not bear the financial burden and lack of opportunity due to the abundance of illegal immigrants that do not contribute to the financial well being of Dare County.

I personally know of a string of burglaries that were handled in a manner that made the victims dissatisfied with the Dare County Sheriff’s Department. I believe that the Sheriff’s Department should take more care in handling these types of cases. I would recommend refocusing budget spending with more emphasis on crime scene investigation, and training for the sheriff’s department in issues relating to burglaries. Is it really necessary to have 5 sheriff’s deputies and a drug dog on a traffic stop for a broken taillight? It should only take one, while the others could be focusing their efforts in a more productive manner.

We need to have a review of the Mutual Aid Agreement with the National Park Service in order to make sure the county is not put in a situation where we are not benefiting from our efforts along with the National Park Service. With the recent legislation to try and conduct beach closures, Dare County runs the risk of loosing revenue from visitors who come to enjoy our pristine beaches each and every year. Not only should we evaluate the county’s actions that coincide with these rulings, we should supply the proper enforcement to aid in ensuring improper acts against nesting birds and animals. It should not be overlooked that environmentalist will engage in extreme acts in attempts to gain more support for their cause in restricting beach access, in which Dare County will suffer.

ToD: Any final thoughts?

Ryan White: I would like to see more of a proactive approach from the Dare County Sheriff’s Department, rather than the reactive approach that has been so commonplace for years. I believe my ideas for Dare County will enable social success and relieve the financial burden it is currently experiencing.

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