What issues are important to me?
ECONOMY/JOBS: I believe we need to take a more regional approach. By pooling our resources with surrounding counties and embracing the fact that Dubois spans both Clearfield and Jefferson, I believe we can attract more industry to our area. It’s self-defeating to have neighboring counties working against rather than with each other. I also believe we need to target mid-level and skilled positions; our area has plenty of $8-$10 per hour jobs, but we all realize a family cannot get ahead on that kind of wage. If we want to convince our children and grandchildren to stay in the area, we have to provide better opportunities. Finally, I believe in 2019 that high-speed internet should be considered a necessary utility, just like clean water and electricity. As Commissioner, I would do everything possible to build the infrastructure needed to bring broadband access to our rural constituents.
SAFETY/CORRECTIONS: The situation at the county jail is unacceptable and needs to be addressed. The jail is badly overdue for renovation and possibly expansion. I will have more on this issue as the campaign progresses – I want to research more facts before proposing specific solutions – but this issue will definitely be one of the highest priorities for me if I am elected.
TAXES/BUDGET: My experience on the school board – and running my business – has taught me that today’s budget issues are almost always the result of mistakes made years ago. Of course, that means that we have to work today to address the potential problems down the line. One of the things I definitely do NOT believe in is ‘kicking the can down the road’. I believe Commissioners are elected to tackle problems head-on, and that’s exactly what I intend to do.
ENVIRONMENT: Clearfield County has two clear strengths: the quality of its people, and the beauty/richness of its land. It’s important to balance the need to attract new industry with the need to protect our environment. I grew up on a farm with poor water, and my grandfather’s house had no fresh water at all due to strip mine spoilage 80 years ago. I believe it is both possible and necessary to build our economy without wrecking our natural landscape.
EDUCATION: I’m passionate about education. I believe that how we educate our kids determines our future. I am a strong advocate of public education, but I also believe that each child is different and the ‘one size fits all’ approach of No Child Left Behind has proven to be a failure. College is an excellent answer for some; for others, it’s a waste of money. The CCCTC, industrial schools such as Triangle Tech, and the trades are perfectly viable options for many of our students and those options should be presented without reservation. I also believe in keeping our schools safe, especially in light of so many tragic school shootings, and so I support SRO presence in each district.