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Homebuilder, chiropractor throw names into Central Kitsap commissioner race
A Democratic East Bremerton homebuilder and a Republican Bremerton chiropractor have joined the fray challenging County Commissioner Josh Brown, a Democrat, for his District 3 seat.
Both Democrat Wally Carlson and Republican David Corley are looking to unseat Brown, of Silverdale.
Carlson’s views on politics are constructed much like his life’s work building houses.
Carlson, 63, doesn’t have a passion for government, claims he’ll never be a career politician and will likely raise a fraction of the money of his competition.
“I’m not a political animal, I’m a business guy,” he said.
He’s running as a conservative Democrat and has raised less than $2,000 so far.
Carlson has owned Wally’s Design Works, a private homebuilding company, for the last 40 years.
He knows he’s a long-shot candidate, but that hasn’t stopped him in the past.
Carlson ran for the same position in 2006 against then-newcomer Brown and Republicans Jack Hamilton and Patty Lent.
He recalled feeling like a “deer in the headlights” and remembered the Kitsap County Democrats refusing to back him.
Still, he decided to run again.
“I don’t mind rogue candidacy,” he said.
Living in Central Kitsap for more than 40 years, Carlson said his philosophy is simple — to run a local government that serves the people from the bottom up with approval from the top.
As a homebuilder, Carl-son said he has become frustrated working with the county’s permit process, which he said has become increasingly arbitrary and full of bureaucracy in the last 15 years.
“Ask anyone about getting a permit and they just roll their eyes,” he said.
Carlson also criticized the commissioners’ involvement with the Puget Sound Regional Council and specifically Brown’s support of the Transportation 2040 plan, saying it isn’t in the best interest of Kitsap County residents.
He acknowledged the county would receive extra dollars by being a part of the council and signing on to the plan, but argued for a time when local governments used to fend for themselves.
Carlson lives in East Bremerton with his wife of 21 years, Vicki. The couple has five children.
David Corley may also be new to politics, but said he too knows what the people want.
Corley, 51, hears about all the problems and issues facing the Kitsap County residents who see him at his chiropractic office in Bremerton.
A priority for Corley — and his patients — is seeing new businesses take over empty storefronts littered throughout the county.
“We are losing a lot of businesses,” said Corley, a Republican, adding that he would like to see more restaurants.
Corley said he has ideas for bringing businesses into the area, but declined to expand on what they might be.
“If we took it more as an aggressive business apporach, we might be able to turn things around quicker,” he said.
Corley said he has no endorsements yet and hasn’t raised any money toward his campaign.
Despite a late start and virtually no campaign to speak of, Corley said he sees himself as a contender for Brown’s seat.
“I see myself doing that job,” he said. “I think I can do the community a good service doing it.”
Corley has lived in Kitsap for 10 years and owns Doyle Chiropractic in Bremerton. He has three sons and has been married for 10 years to Susan Corley.
Abby Burlingame, of East Bremerton, is also running as a Republican for the seat.
This version has been corrected.