A PLAN FOR A BETTER CARTER COUNTY
I have several key areas that I want to work on if elected. All are interrelated and equally important to the future of our county. We need to find new ways of generating revenue so we can improve the lives of our fellow citizens. All of these issues go hand-in-hand. We must have good roads, good jobs, good infrastructure and enhanced public safety to complement each other, which will in turn make a BETTER CARTER COUNTY!
First and foremost, we need more revenue! I have been studying the current county budget. No matter who wins this election, we need to increase revenue in order to be able to afford improvement and effect change for the future. The majority of any governmental budget includes fixed costs that cannot be done away with, such as personnel, insurance, fuel and so on. The remainder of the budget can be adjusted as needed, but accounts for only a small portion of the budget as a whole. As a result, we are doing essentially the best we can with what we have left, no matter who our elected representatives are.
I have new ideas on how to raise more revenue without taxing our citizens to death. I don't like paying taxes any more than you. I want to minimize the tax burden on our citizens but at the same time be able to pay for the improvements needed in our communities that our citizens demand and deserve. One way of accomplishing this is to look at ways to increase revenue by adding a tax to products and commodities that are exported out of our county. This way the non-Carter County consumer can pay a fee for using the products that leave our county, so that tax money will be derived from non-Carter Countians. One example of this is the limestone that is mined here in our county. If we added a surcharge or natural resources tax to the rock hauled out of our county, we could put that money back into the roads that are damaged by the heavy weights hauled on them that we are burdened to repair.
We also need to ask each county department to look for ways to save or reduce costs in their everyday operations. We can save money by operating all county departments as efficiently as possible and reward those employees that offer recommendations and implement strategies that produce results. We need to find ways of generating revenue without placing a heavy burden on our people.
The condition of our county roads dominates just about every conversation I've had with rural voters. We do live in one of the largest counties in Kentucky and, therefore, we cannot compare ourselves to adjoining counties who have much larger tax bases and several hundred, if not thousands, of miles less in county roadways to maintain. It's like comparing apples to oranges. I own and operate construction equipment and understand how roads need to be built and maintained. My personal experience and understanding in construction and equipment operation will be a valuable asset for me to draw from if elected.
If elected, I want to implement a systematic road repair schedule and work on our roads as quickly as possible to ensure the safety of our citizens on local roads. A good transportation system is vital for economic development in our county. We must address the condition of our roads.
The road conditions come back to revenue. We must be able to afford to improve our roadways.
We have always been hindered in this county by a lack of good paying jobs. As a business owner and operator, I understand that for our local economy to thrive, we need good paying local jobs to put money back into our local economy. I am a small business owner/operator. I understand that having well paying, local jobs is imperative to the success of small businesses in our community. Our citizens need to make a decent wage in order to have disposable income to spend in our local restaurants, stores and shops so our local economy can thrive. When local small business do well, those who work there do well. For this reason, I always have and always will support labor unions and any organization that provides and promotes jobs and provides for and promotes a better working wage for our people.
My children have had to leave Carter County for better opportunities and that saddens me. We need to change this so our kids can raise their families here while earning a good wage, allowing them to remain in our community.
If elected I will pursue and help facilitate any and all promises of industry, new business, and jobs that I can for our county.
As a builder and contractor, I recognize the need for improved infrastructure in our county. It is imperative that we increase our capacity to handle increased power, water, and sanitary sewer services to accommodate not only new industrial and business growth, but also to be able to supply utilities to facilitate new residential growth in our county. This, in turn, will encourage new business, generate revenue, and create new jobs.
If elected, I will strive to collaborate and partner with both cities in our county, as well as neighboring counties, to facilitate improvements and expansion of infrastructure in our county so we will be prepared, should the opportunity arise, to land new industry, housing, and business opportunities for our citizens. It is imperative that the county and city governments work together. We must prepare for our future!
As a long time law enforcement officer in this county, having served our people with both city police departments as well as the sheriffs office, I understand the vital role our fire, police, and EMS play in our county. I understand the struggles, especially with funding, these folks deal with constantly. I will support all of our public safety personnel and help in any way possible to continue to provide safety and security to our citizens.
I have several ideas on improving fire and EMS services in Carter County to consolidate and streamline operations to help shore up the financial stability of our first responders. One idea would be to combine and cross-train our fire and EMS services to provide better, faster coverage and response times to rural areas of the county like Carter City, Denton, and Willard. I look forward to meeting with these folks and proposing my new ideas to see if we can improve public safety for our citizens.