Introducing the candidates for 2004: District 67 Representative
Walt Borla, Democratic candidate for State House seat, District 67. A lifetime resident of Helper, the retired postmaster of Helper, presently in his sixteeth year as a member of Carbon Board of Education. An advocate for education, open government and more balance in the state legislature. I have been active in youth baseball programs in the state for 52 years, Western Boys Baseball Association and American Legion. During my tenure as a postmaster I was very active in the National Association of Postmasters of the United States.I served as state chapter editor for 13 years and a past president of the state chapter. On the national level I served as a national vice president representing many of the western states. Since retiring, NAPUS has awarded me a Lifetime Achievement Award, only five of these ever being awarded thus far.
The most serious issues facing Utah in the next four years are two fold: meeting our educational needs and transportation.
Within 10 years Utah public schools will see an influx of 25,000 or more additional students. Our transportation problems continue to mount, Utah County and points south need additional means to reach Salt Lake City: highway improvements, light rail, commuter train service. U.S. Highway 6 between Spanish Fork and Helper has been deemed by Reader's Digest as one of the 10 most deadliest highways in the United States.
I have three specific priorities if elected. First, seek a means of meeting our educational needs, funding, accountability. Educational legislation has been bottled up in committee during the last several sessions, we must have open government and balance for these items to come to the floor and be debated seriously.
Second, concentrate on Highway 6 improvements, too many people are meeting their death or serious injury on the dangerous highway. Also improvements to I-15 over the Point of the Mountain must be made on the Utah County side as well as the Salt Lake County side.
Third, correct a major obstruction to balanced representation in the Utah state legislature. I would seek to take away the power of the legislature in the re-districting process every 10 years when the census figures come out. This process should be handled by an independent commission to avoid the ridiculous gerrymandering that resulted in the makeup of District 67.
Patrick Painter is 48 years old and lives in Mona in Juab County. He has a business degree from UVSC and 28 years in the automotive retailing business at Painter Chrysler Dodge Jeep in Nephi. He is the Vice Chairman for the Central Applied Technology Board Advisory Committee at the Snow College campus in Richfield.
These are the issues he thinks are important to District 67.
Education. The key to funding our education needs is to foster policies that encourage capital formation and economic growth. State government can't create wealth or jobs, but it can create an environment that encourages business to locate to our state. Juab County, where I live, was able to double its tax base by luring a large natural gas power generating facility here. This development will have a positive impact on our school district budgets for years to come.
Economic development.As important as educating the 150,000 new school age children coming into our classrooms in the next 10 years will be the challenge of finding gainful employment in our state for them when they graduate from high school and college. I believe it's important to provide a positive business environment for investment capital and ideas to converge in our state. It is my understanding that Carbon County is offering tax incentives to businesses that locate there and your County Commissioners should be commended for doing so. New investment is what will drive our economy and job growth.
Natural Resources. It is estimated that just the increase in personal computer usage via the internet will increase the demand for electricity by 30 percent in the next 10 years. Resources such as coal and natural gas will play an important role in fulfilling that need for power generating facilities. Utah should make every effort to capitalize on the vast resources that exist here in our state to bolster that segment of our economy. A fair and equitable reimbursement of a portion of the excise and severance fees collected in the county where the minerals are extracted should remain in place to offset the impact of these activities.
I support the policy of multiple uses for our great outdoors in this state.