I’m State Senator Dale Schultz, and I’ve accepted Channel 3’s invitation for suggestions on their 2014 Editorial Agenda.
Here are mine: Frac Sand Mining, Public Education, Jobs and Poverty and Redistricting Reform.
Frac Sand Mining is an issue of local control. I’m opposed to a bill which overrides local government. I suggest a bi-partisan legislative study committee which reports back to the full legislature ensuring transparency.
It’s time to stop demonizing public education. Strong public schools are a foundation of this state. Further spread of charter and voucher schools is a recipe for a two class society.
Jobs and poverty are linked. Richland County ranks second in cheapest housing in Wisconsin. Why? Because our region also has one of the state’s highest poverty rates. Yes, rural Wisconsinites are sleeping in cars, and kids are going hungry, and that ALSO has an impact on education performance.
Redistricting is at the crux of these issues. The current way of redrawing legislative boundaries breeds an election process where the most extreme candidates in both parties win the primaries. Senator Cullen and I authored a bill to change that because we believe voters should choose their legislators instead of legislators choosing their voters.
Most importantly, the solutions to these issues don’t lie with one legislator or person; the solutions will require involvement by the broader community. It’s our collective work and dedication which will produce change.