La Grande’s Barreto seeks candidacy

By Kelly Ducote, The Observer January 01, 2014 10:43 am

 

Barreto Manufacturing owner seeks to represent District 58 in Oregon House

La Grande businessman Greg Barreto announced Monday his candidacy for State Representative House District 58.

Barreto, owner and founder of Barreto Manufacturing, plans to use his 30 years of business experience to serve Eastern Oregon.

“Those serving in Salem should be in the business of streamlining government and promoting an atmosphere for business to prosper,” Barreto said in a written statement. “I pledge to use my business skills to help create new opportunities to make the lives of House District 58 citizens better.”

Barreto says his innovative ideas and sound business practices give him insight to the challenges faced by rural communities.

“After surviving the ups and downs of business in Oregon over the last 30 years, I know what it takes to create lasting prosperity in Eastern Oregon,” he said in his statement. “I’ll fight for sound ideas that benefit those I swear an oath to serve, which will often mean opposing government bureaucrats and the Portland crowd that runs Salem.”

Barreto is endorsed by Union County Commissioners Mark Davidson, Bill Rosholt and Steve McClure, according to a press release from Barreto. Other endorsements include La Grande Mayor Dan Pokorney and Union County Sheriff Boyd Rasmussen.

Union County Board of Commission Chair Mark Davidson said Barreto is a fiscally conservative businessman, who understands the effect the Legislature can have on businesses and everyday life.

“You look at his background and experience, he started his business from very humble beginnings,” Davidson said. Barreto started his manufacturing business in his garage before moving to Union County in the 1980s. “He’s been a significant employer for Union County and exports products around the world.”

If elected, Barreto would be the first state representative from Union County since Mark Simmons, a Republican from Elgin, who served more than a decade ago.

“I think it’s extremely important that Union County have a representative there in Salem,” Davidson said. “That’s the only way we can be assured our interests are represented and our needs are given the same weight.”

Current District 58 representative, Bob Jenson, a Pendleton Republican, is the longest serving member of the House. He announced in November that he would not be seeking a 10th term, the East Oregonian reported. Immediately following that announcement, Republican John Turner, also of Pendleton, announced his candidacy for the seat. Turner, a retired U.S. Marine Corps colonel, served as Blue Mountain Community College president from 2004 to 2013 and also serves as the director of the Port of Umatilla.

Barreto has lived in Oregon 52 years and has been married to his wife, Chris, for 34 years. He has eight children and four grandchildren. He is a supporter of local 4-H and FFA programs as well as Community Connection of Northeast Oregon. He is a member of the Union County Economic Development Board and is an elder at Grace Bible Church.

Contact Kelly Ducote at 541-786-4230 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it Follow Kelly on Twitter @lgoDucote.