Issues are important to this race for Ellis County Commissioner, precinct 3:No tax increases
I will not vote for a tax increase. More importantly, I will not vote for a budget that requires a tax increase.
If you really believe that we have plenty of government in our county, state, and country, then there is no excuse to raise taxes. Money that goes to the government in the form of taxation is rarely spent as resourcefully as money in the private sector. Money in your pocket and in your bank account helps your family and the economy more efficiently than extra money going into the hands of the government, including your county government.
Our current county commissioner recently voted for an increase in the tax rate, an act for which the Republican Party of Ellis County censured him. I would make an effort to have that tax increase rescinded, and I would look for more creative ways to solve budget issues in the future. Transparency and openness
Issues being brought before the county commissioners or being introduced by the commissioners’ court should be clearly and thoroughly publicized so that the public knows what is going on in county government.
Transparency has been sorely lacking during the last few years, as evidenced by the too-quiet revocation of deed restrictions that affected pollution controls on whoever occupies the former Supercollider property. The agenda item should have been more clearly labeled. This action by our commissioners has the potential to adversely affect the property values and safety of those who have built around the old Collider with the understanding that their property values were being protected.
The imposition of 490+ page emergency plan passed by the commissioners some time ago that is just now coming to light is another example of our lack of open government. While we need to plan for potential emergencies, this plan has provisions that could potentially affect your basic rights to property, travel, and the exercise of the Second Amendment. Update: Our vocal opposition to this plan may be getting through to the commissioners, as you can see in this opinion column printed in the July 22nd edition of the Waxahachie Daily Light: http://www.waxahachietx.com/opinion/localcolumnists/wdl-editorial-better-late-than-never/article_45a2814c-d384-11e1-b387-001a4bcf887a.html
If I am elected, I will first and foremost avoid actions that violate your rights. Furthermore, I will work to ensure that court business is conducted in a clear, open, understandable fashion.
If I am elected, everyone should feel comfortable contacting my office by phone or in person. But it is my wish that residents would never need to call me, because I plan to be out in the communities in this county. If elected, I propose holding quarterly meetings in all the major towns in this precinct. That means once or twice a month, I’ll be somewhere to listen to your concerns. You will know where I will be. Improvements in road and bridge management
With thoughtful consideration and careful planning, we need to re-think how we do road and bridge management. Although the commissioners’ court will maintain the responsibility for getting it done right, we need to consolidate our road and bridge management over time, with an eye to efficiency.
Over decades of residency in this county, I have seen duplication of personnel and equipment that has sometimes led to an inefficient use of your tax dollars. At times throughout the history of Ellis County, there have been conflicts between commissioners, sometimes with refusals to share equipment.
We must have a long-term plan that would make better coordinated use of road and bridge crews and equipment. Citizens see differences in the upkeep in different parts of the county.
There is no perfect answer, but we need to think through some of the political-based decisions in road and bridge management. I will value and solicit citizen input over this process.Term limits
Political offices are positions of service. Too often, candidates look upon them as places to build a career. I already have a career. I have 29 years of experience in the financial industry and 12 years’ concurrent experience as an arbitrator and mediator. I desire to contribute these skills and knowledge as your representative on the Ellis County Commissioners’ Court.
As conservatives we talk a lot about limited government and being responsible to the taxpayers, but officials too often see their positions as a job and career and not as a place where they are privileged to serve and help make sure that government does just a few things, and does them well.
If elected, I will serve the citizens of precinct 3 with that goal of doing a few things well. Down the road, should the voters choose to re-elect me, I would limit myself to two terms in office. I will go live under the regulations that we commissioners have passed, just in the way that the Founding Fathers of both this nation and this state envisioned.