Residents of Senate District 30 will vote Tuesday, Nov. 6, in the general election.
Those candidates appearing on the ballot include incumbent Mary Kiffmeyer and Diane Nguyen.
The candidates were asked to include their thoughts in statements. Each were asked to include a short biography of themselves and their backgrounds as well as their personal and professional experiences. They were also asked to comment on two questions that were asked. (See questions belows in each statement).
The responses received include:
Address: Big Lake township 30+ years,
Occupation: Registered Nurse
Community involvement: Big Lake Community Education Advisory Council, Monticello-Big Lake Hospital District Board Treasurer, Big Lake Legion Auxiliary, active Church member and volunteer for many local events from peeling potatoes to calling bingo numbers.
1. How should the 2021 Legislature handle the budget issues and meet school and societal needs caused by covid-19
The two-year state budget shortfall is projected at $7.4 billion. I support a freeze and overall budget reduction of 10%. Then, we should restructure the delivery of services preserving care for our neediest while using technology and reforms to reduce costs. With a large budget of over $50 billion, small changes have a big impact. I will not support increasing taxes on taxpayers.
Education has always been protected though shifting payments (not cutting) a useful tool for a tough time. I support a $50/pupil/year permanent increase for extra costs. COVID-19 reaction has cost a great deal to our society. Getting things open and using our freedoms will be the greatest help to society.
Long Term Care needs to open up to families who are a great asset for the overall wellbeing of residents. Isolation kills too. The end /months days of our elderly should be with family.
2. Will you support the passage of a bonding bill in 2021 or 2022. If so, where should the priorities be?
I do support a small bonding bill focused on roads/bridges and state-owned property maintenance. I also support reforms of state property ownership so that all maintenance is included in their own budgets instead of coming to the state for extra funding.
I do not support using highway transportation bonding for buildings as currently proposed by Gov Walz. That funding from gas taxes should be used exclusively for actual roads and bridges. Every year, the auto-related sales tax brings in millions of additional money to the Highway User Tax Distribution Fund which should be used only for Township, City, County and State roads/bridges.