Present employment: Innkeeper, Crocker House Country Inn
Highest level of education completed: MBA from Michigan State University
Previous elected public office(s) held: School board (16 years) and state representative (eight years)
The challenges that will face the 129th Legislature are not significantly different from the challenges that faced the 128th. The desire for increased funding for services will be paramount. Funding for 55 percent of general-purpose aid for schools will be an issue, as will be determining an operator for a forensic mental health step-down facility yet to be constructed. Additional monies for information technology will become a sticking point. The workforce shortage will be reflected in the inability to expand Medicaid and workforce development will start to take precedence over many other issues.
A new governor will bring a new sense of priorities and with that some challenges that are unanticipated. The issue of taxation will be very prominent, particularly in regard to infrastructure, as our transportation budget should be put on a more permanent footing.
I will address the above issues as I have in the past. I will look at each issue within the context of the proper role of government, while trying to address the needs of those who are unable to take care of themselves. I hope to be able to craft a budget that satisfies most everyone-though that rarely ever happens.