Baldwin City About 70 people listened to the Kansas House candidates for the 10th District answer questions at Baker University on Tuesday evening.
Incumbent Democrat Tony Brown and challenger TerriLois Gregory, a Republican, discussed taxes, education funding, improving the economy and other issues during a forum sponsored by the Baldwin City Chamber of Commerce.
Both candidates said they oppose high taxes several times during the forum. They were also asked what their top two priorities would be if they win the Nov. 2 election.
“I think the primary focus we should have in Topeka is adequate funding for education,” Brown said. “ … The other priority is we’ve got to get out of the three anchors of state economy that we’ve been relying on for a long time. Those would be agriculture, oil and gas and aerospace. We’ve got to have more money in the pot.”
Brown said opportunities for growth exist in high-tech industries, especially in the biosciences and animal-health industries.
Gregory said she agreed that there are opportunities for job growth in wind energy and the planned intermodal transportation hub near Edgerton. However, her priorities are different from her opponent’s, she said.
“My top priorities would be to quit spending money we don’t have and to implement efficiencies,” Gregory said. “We need to implement standard accounting for all agencies, not just schools, so that taxpayers can see where their money is being spent.”
After answering 10 questions about popular topics, the candidates gave their closing remarks.
“We are at a crossroad here in Kansas,” Brown said. “Are we going to be a state that funds education and provides services to our elderly and people in need? Or during these tough economically times, are we going to cut taxes as much as possible and live in a state that just gets by?”
Gregory responded with her closing remarks.
“You’ve heard we have to increase our taxes or cut our services, but there is another option,” Gregory said. “We can implement efficiencies, and we can cut wasteful spending.”
The 10th District covers Baldwin City, Wellsville, north Ottawa and south Lawrence.