Q. What relevant experience do you bring to the office you seek?
In the past 42 years here in Wisconsin, I have started, owned, and run businesses; have been a trial lawyer representing individuals and farmers; have participated in groups and organizations supporting veterans and families; have participated and been the chairman of an international group promoting safety and infection control in dentistry; have worked with the CDC, FDA, and EPA as a small business person; and am attuned to the needs of our community. I listen to what people say, and try to maximize the best from the people I work with and myself.
Q. The American Society of Civil Engineers says Wisconsin motorists spend $2.0-billion per year in costs from driving on roads in need of repairs. Name a specific measure you would support that would bring in more money for road projects.
I agree. We should take $1 billion of the amount currently allocated to the $4.5 billion dollar FoxConn project and immediately start applying it to our infrastructure. We should also index the gas tax to reflect inflation, and work on a long-term permanent solution to road funding.
Q. State aid to local school districts has been reduced, or remained flat for the last few years. Leaders of local school districts say that has resulted in stagnant teacher pay and reductions in educational programs that students need and want. Some worry that we are losing our best and brightest teachers to neighboring states. So many local school districts are now going to voters, asking them to pass referendums that would allow these schools to raise local property taxes to make up the difference. In your opinion, is this the best and most fair way to fund these projects? If so, what is the role of the state to provide further assistance? If not, what, specifically, would you do to provide more state aid to local schools and where would that money come from?
The long term health of our state, both economically, environmentally, and spiritually depends on the quality of our education and educational system. I believe that local communities should be able to decide to invest additional tax dollars in their local schools, but there must be a fair means of funding schools across the state so students in less affluent areas can also have the best teachers and resources. I oppose using public tax dollars to fund private education at the expense of our public schools. We are currently 36th in reading ability—behind Mississippi! That needs to stop. We need to invest in education, not foreign corporations.
Q. What makes you the best candidate to represent your district?
I want to get the best government we can get with the taxes we pay. I have the time and ability to get the job done. I am a creative problem-solver and a strong advocate for AD 30.
Q. What do you think should be the top priorities for the state and your area over the next decade? If elected to office, how would you advance those priorities?
Invest in our state infrastructure and educational systems. Financial support for local schools is imperative. We must make health care good and affordable. Since the federal government seems to be unable to figure out health care, we should implement Badger Care for everyone in Wisconsin. We need to change our vision from being a bargain basement corporate welfare state, to a vibrant locally supported and sustained economy. We are dead last in the 50 states for startup companies. Our priority should be to be number 1 in startups, and number 1 in public education.