November 6, 2007

Some political experts would advise a primary candidate to avoid being pinned down on ballot issues or which candidates he/she supports. That’s not fair to voters. My race may be a year away, but for the record, here’s how I voted:

Initiative I-960 - Requiring 2/3 legislative approval or voter approval for tax and fee increases: YES
This one doesn’t need much explanation; it should be difficult to raise taxes (first we need to be sure the money already collected is being spent wisely, and I have my doubts) and fees are just sneaky taxes.

Referendum 67 - Triple damages for lawsuits against insurance companies: NO
We already have the right to sue our insurance companies if they don’t pay fairly on a claim. A better enforcement tool would be an Insurance Commissioner with the guts to enforce existing laws available to hold insurance companies accountable. This one is just a fee increase for trial lawyers.

Senate Joint Resolution 8206 – Budget stabilization account: APPROVE
Common sense says we need to have a savings account tucked away in case of emergency (a real emergency, not the kind of emergency the legislature keeps tacking onto ordinary bills to avoid the referendum process).

Senate Joint Resolution 8212 – Inmate labor authorization: APPROVE
95% of all inmates will be released back into society. They should not be sitting idle. I want them to pay restitution, pay child support, and come out with an idea of what good work habits means.

House Joint Resolution 4204 – Eliminate supermajority on school levies: REJECT
The paramount duty of the state is education, and I pledge to support a strong system of public education. This isn’t the way to do that. Districts that don’t pass levies usually have some problem within the district that needs to be addressed, and the levy passes when they take care of the problem. For other districts, the economic base just isn’t there. HJR 4204 lets the legislature pass the buck.

House Joint Resolution 4215 – Authorize investment options for higher education funds: APPROVE
Greater reward comes with greater risk, and this isn’t a big risk. We need to be wise stewards of trust funds and get a decent return on investment.