Archive for Sunday, November 2, 2008

State Senate races: Kansas Senate District 3

November 2, 2008


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Election 2008

In-depth coverage of the candidates and the issues, all leading up to the Aug. 5 primary and the Nov. 4 general election.

Two veteran legislators are going head-to-head for the Senate seat in Kansas' 3rd District.

Incumbent Republican Roger Pine has held the position since January 2005. He is being challenged by Tom Holland, a Democrat who since January 2003 has represented the 10th District in the Kansas House.

Holland, 47, Baldwin City, touts his record on helping pass tax cuts for senior citizens and businesses. He said he wants to focus on making health insurance more affordable for all Kansans, protecting and growing Kansas jobs and wages and continued investments in education.

Holland also thinks the state needs a long-range energy plan, similar to past 10-year state transportation plans. Holland voted against the proposals for new coal-fired plants in Western Kansas. Coal plants represented too much risk for ratepayers and the state because of uncertainty of possible federal implementation of carbon dioxide emissions, he believes.

"I believe that coal, nuclear, wind and solar all figure into our long-term energy plan," Holland said.

Pine, 68, rural Linwood, supported the coal plants because he said they would utilize the latest technology to burn coal and cause less pollution than old existing plants. He also supports use of renewable energy such as wind, solar and hydroelectric sources.

Concerning the state budget, increased spending should be curtailed and waste "rooted out," said Holland, owner and president of Holland Technologies Inc., an information technology firm.

Pine said there should be a scrutiny of funds available and state agencies should have an opportunity to suggest where budget cuts can be made. He also urges efficiency in state spending.

Pine, a farmer, has spent much of the campaign explaining why documents listed him as living at a rural Lawrence residence when he also had a home in rural Linwood, both in his Senate district. He said he believed until the August primary election that he could choose to vote in either location "until I was told otherwise." He has since re-registered to vote in Leavenworth County.

The Senate district includes Jefferson County, much of Leavenworth County and in Douglas County Eudora, Grant, Palmyra townships and part of Wakarusa Township.


Patrick Wilbur 9 years, 6 months ago

Here my responses to the LJW questionnaire that I completed and submitted to their staff. Thanks - Patrick Wilbur (Candidate for 3rd district State Senate)1.Should there be a statewide ban on smoking in indoor public places, such as restaurants and bars?a.There are two major problems with a statewide smoking ban. First this is a clear violation of property rights. Small businesses such as restaurants and bars should have complete control over the decision whether to allow smoking. Customers will decide if a non-smoking policy is to their liking. Prospective employees can make the same decision when applying for work. The market is perfectly capable of determining an outcome. Second the state of Kansas should not be implementing laws that trump local ordinances. There is no reason why municipalities cannot debate and determine the best strategy for their own community. 2.Would you support an increase in the cigarette tax to help pay for health coverage for low-income Kansans?a.A cigarette tax is often used as a copout when the state does not want to make tough decisions. Using the same logic we should increase taxes on other unhealthy items such as trans-fats and candy. This type of tax results in diminishing returns, and frankly it is embarrassing that this is a cornerstone of the Kansas Health Policy Authority's wellness plan. 3.Where do you think the state budget can be cut?a.The first place we should look is the state's economic development initiative. Kansas spent $1.3 billion through taxes and tax abatements to spur economic growth during the past 5 years. The Legislative Division of Post Audit could not determine if this resulted in business growth for the state. I like to know what I'm getting for my money. This type of expenditure is unacceptable. We should spur growth the old-fashioned and effective way through a lower tax burden.4.Would you support an increase in the age of Kansans to get a driver's license?a.I'm not sure there is any evidence that there is a pressing need for this increase. Poor driving is not limited to a specific age group. In addition there is still a large agricultural industry in Kansas that in part relies on younger workers and their need for transportation. 5.Do you support Gov. Kathleen Sebelius' opposition to the two coal-fired plants in western Kansas?a.I oppose the Holcomb project because it does not have long-term viability in that area. The Ogallah aquifer will be dry in the next few years, and there will not be enough water to support two coal plants. I do not oppose coal or any other energy source if the conditions are viable. That being said, the decision by the KDHE points out how haphazard and disorganized the state's energy policy is. Both Republicans and Democrats have failed to address this over the past few decades.

Mkh 9 years, 6 months ago

LJW Staff---Why did you not mention the third candidate in this race, Libertarian Patrick Wilbur? How do you expect the citizens to make an informed decision when you exclude one of the candidates from your election reporting?I would certainly hope that the ommitance of Patrick Wilbur from your article is purely an editor's mistake and not the result of malice, attempting to exclude third parties from the election process. I expect this situation to be immediately corrected. Thank you.

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