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State Senate District 9 candidates talk about platforms

Published: May 1, 2008

Three Republicans and two Democrats are running in the May 20 primary election for Senate District 9. Running for the Republican nomination are incumbent Fred Girod, Sarah Arcune and Herman Baurer. Running for the Democrat nomination are Steven Frank and Bob McDonald. Arcune, Baurer and McDonald failed to respond to requests for information prior to press time. Ballots will be mailed on May 2.

Republican

Name: Fred Girod

Age: 57

Spouse: Daphne

Children and grandchildren: 2 children, 3 grandchildren

Occupation (background if retired): Dentist, Partner in Assisted Care Facilities, State Senator

Why are you running for the state Senate?

Rural Oregon needs a strong voice in the Senate. Someone who will stand up to Portland and Eugene's nut group is essential. I am that voice.

What makes you the best person to represent us in Senate District 9?

I was born and raised in timber and agricultural country and am not afraid to take on environmental extremists. We need a counter weight to Portland and Eugene.

What are the three most important issues to you, and what do you plan to do in relation to them?

Timber policy, public safety and tort reform. I requested to remain vice-chair of the Natural Resources Committee in the Senate where timber policy is being discussed. I am involved statewide in uniting timber communities in order to have a stronger voice. For example, I will be in Medford May 1 at a timber summit with multi-county representation.

An important component to remember is science is on our side in the timber debate. There is nothing environmentally friendly about allowing conditions which promote devastating forest fires. Western wild fires are a major source of greenhouse gas emissions. The sequestering of carbon also favors timber harvest. It has been said that some environmentalists are loving our forests to death. Well, I would add that this over-reaction is causing the death of our rural timber-dependent economies as well.

Public safety is very important to me and I support tougher penalties for property crimes. With the meth epidemic we have little choice but incarceration. At a committee hearing on property crimes, I heard the statistic that on average a criminal does 42 crimes before their first conviction and the vast majority of property crimes are committed by meth addicts.

Meth addiction is nearly impossible to break without incarceration. You have to cut off the supply. I also supported more state police on our highways and will push for the placement of our new recruits in rural areas.

Tort reform is essential if we are to improve access to health care. Hundreds of millions of dollars go in the pockets of lawyers and not towards the treatment of people who can't afford it. I have proposed legislation that would resolve this problem.

What will you do as a senator for small towns, like Sweet Home, still recovering from the decline of the timber industry?

I have seventeen cities in my district and believe it or not Sweet Home is the second largest. We are all in the same boat. I will do whatever it takes to change timber policy for the better. 

Democrat

Name: Steven H. Frank, Steve Frank to most

Age: 55

Spouse: Linda

Children and grandchildren: Daughter Colleen and granddaughter Adrianna

Occupation (background if retired): Taught first and second grade, worked for the Postal Service for more than 23 years, retired and went back to teaching, serves on the Stayton City Council

Why are you running for the state Senate?

I'm running for the state Senate because I want to bring a new direction to Senate District 9 and I want to continue the outstanding achievements of the 2007-08 Legislature. Much more could have been done, and will be done for the citizens of District 9 when I am elected to the senate.

What makes you the best person to represent us in Senate District 9?

Most of my life, I've lived, worked, raised a family and enjoyed the natural resources in the district (how I love fishing for steelhead!). This has given me an in depth perspective on the people, recreation and challenges here.

What are the three most important issues to you, and what do you plan to do in relation to them?

I'm going to give you four.

Education: My experiences as a classroom teacher convince me that we must fund the Quality Education Model brought to the Legislature in 1999. It should be serving as the foundation for the funding of public schools. That's why if I am elected, I will continue the work legislators began last session to assure that we always have school funding. Crumbling schools are a stark reminder that we must allocate funds for capital improvements.

Land Use: Much of the land in District 9 is devoted to agriculture and forestry. Planning that protects our farms, working ranches and forests is vital to our future. We must do more to balance community needs while protecting natural and improved resources for future generations.

The 2007-08 Legislature was able to pass bills that protected District 9. But there is more work to be done. If I am elected, I will work with legislators who understand the importance of careful planning.

Renewable Energy: More of us are noticing how climate change is affecting us. Once again, the democratically led legislature started us down a path towards increased renewable energy usage. I will work with those legislators already leading Oregon toward efficient, reliable energy options.

Funding Basic Services: Our legislators made sure our state police received funding for more officers. But many projects, like Oregon Project Independence have lost funding. More must be done to bring fairness to funding so that no one gets left behind. We have progressive legislators to thank for the progress that has been made. We must remember that during hard times, the disadvantaged suffer the most. The rainy day fund must be built to withstand the struggles we will face.

What will you do as a senator for small towns, like Sweet Home, still recovering from the decline of the timber industry?

We have spent hundreds of billions of dollars funding an ill-conceived war in Iraq. That money could have helped communities like Sweet Home recover from the decline of the timber industry. We must protect and defend our country, but the billions of dollars we are still spending on the war in Iraq is hurting communities like Sweet Home. The federal government must live up to its responsibilities and once again, help communities like Sweet Home.

If we do not help those who are suffering in our country we are at risk. We must focus on those who need our help and give them assistance. As a Stayton City Councilor, I recognize some of the similar challenges facing the citizens of Sweet Home. I am convinced that by working together we can make a better life for ourselves.

My colleagues on council see me as a person who listens, collaborates and leads. City staff knows I am willing to dig for facts and seek advice. Those who support my campaign sincerely believe I am the best person to represent Senate District 9.

I hope we have an opportunity to meet and discuss your concerns about the district. Please call me at (503) 602-2645 and visit my Web site


 

 

Paid for and authorized by Fred Girod for State Representative · 101 Fern Ridge Rd, Stayton OR 97383 · phone 503-769-4322 · e-mail