Incumbent to face developer in Republican primary for Ottawa County Board District 5

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Incumbent to face developer in Republican primary for Ottawa County Board District 5


OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. – A tech entrepreneur is running against an incumbent Ottawa County commissioner in the Aug. 2 GOP primary to represent the 5th District.

Joe Moss of Hudsonville is seeking to unseat incumbent businessman Randy Mapelink of Zeeland for the two-year seat on the board. There is no Democrat running for a winner to face in November.

The district encompasses Jamestown Charter Township, Blendon Township, Hudsonville Township and Zeeland Charter Township Precinct 1.

Moss, 37, is co-founder and president of the Ottawa Impact. He describes himself as a 15-year business owner, CFO and technology entrepreneur who has served on non-profit boards as president/treasurer/vice president/director and is an advocate for freedom and parental rights.

Meppelink, 55, is a U.S. Navy veteran who has served on the Ottawa County Board of Commissioners since 2018. He owns several businesses in the county, including Window Products Inc. He is a retired firefighter from the Town of Blendon (20 years), where he was a former trustee and clerk. Mappelink is also the head football coach at Zeeland West Middle School.

MLive/The Grand Rapids Press has partnered with the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Michigan to provide a voter guide for readers. Each candidate was asked to outline their positions on the public policy issues listed below.

All answers in the guide are submitted directly by the candidate and have not been edited by the League of Women Voters. Spelling and grammar have not been corrected. Publication of candidate statements is solely in the interest of public service 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

From this list, rate your top 3 priorities for the Ottawa County Commissioner’s office: funding for infrastructure and roads, land use, water quality, social services, lower taxes, safety, county-wide millage-funded senior services, redistribution – allocation of district commissioner . Discuss briefly.

Joe Moss:

Water quality, land use, lower taxes. County commissioners should build relationships and coordinate with local municipal officials on these issues.

Randy Meppelink:

Water quality, land use, roads.

STATEMENT: The county commissioners have done an effective job in running the county for the past two years. Do you agree or disagree? Explain briefly.

Joe Moss:

I do not agree. I want to see new leaders elected who prioritize personal freedom and parental rights. Many of the current leaders (including my opponent) have recently been censured by their own party.

Randy Meppelink:

i agree, ottawa county is the fastest growing county in the state, people want to be here. We also have a AAA rating on our finances and are the 3rd lowest taxed county in the state.

What are your strategies for meeting with your district to get local insight on important county decisions.

Joe Moss:

I have attended local municipal and city board meetings in District 5. I was told (during the meetings, public record) that the municipal and city officials have not seen their county commissioner in years. I will attend local meetings and build relationships in the area so I can listen and serve the people.

Randy Meppelink:

it’s important to show up at events and listen. Not always to talk about ourselves or what we have done, but to listen to the concerns of citizens.

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