Present employment: Retired
Highest level of education completed: B.A. Cum Laude, GPA 3.597; Major: French; Minors: German and Education. Completed one semester of my master’s degree in French, GPA 3.5, before moving to the French-speaking part of Switzerland.
Previous elected public office(s) held: Hope School Committee (current); Board of Assessors, Cushing; School Board Member for Thomaston, Cushing and St. George
Statement: I am running for office because I believe in Maine’s people and our Constitution. I want to live in a state where the rule of law applies equally, where we look to the people for solutions and where we treat each other with respect. I support transparency in government. I want a government that inspires us to be the best we can be, using education not force. With common sense, we will solve problems together – Dirigo.
What are your thoughts on proposals to do away with Maine’s income taxes?
Taxes should be easy to comply with and fair. Basic necessities should not be taxed. The most regressive tax is the property tax on our primary residences. Housing is a basic necessity. If we are unable to pay property taxes due to retirement, a health issue, or caring for family, we lose our homes. I would like to see a major overhaul of the tax system. It will take some research and some careful thought.
When it comes to the state budget, what do you see as top priorities for spending or cuts?
My current spending priorities would be to take better care of our most vulnerable people, how we fund our schools, public safety and the roads. When looking for places to cut costs, I would look for redundancies, waste and ways to accomplish our goals more efficiently. Some things, like health and human services, might still be funded on a state level but better managed on a county or community level. I see a lot of needs not being addressed and hear a lot of complaints about health and human services.
How can Maine best make health care affordable for its citizens?
Much of what we pay to doctors and hospitals is to cover the cost of liability and insurance paperwork. We can help with that via legislation. My primary care doctor told me that 80 percent of our health care issues are created by the choices we make. To that, I would add that our health is directly affected by the availability and affordability of healthy foods, knowing what environmental toxins to avoid, indoor air pollution and our environment. We could make huge changes simply by educating the public and supporting their efforts make better choices.
What policy changes would you support to protect the environment and respond to climate change?
Our Individual choices collectively make a big impact. I would focus on educating and inspiring people to make better choices. Planned obsolescence is a major problem that needs addressing. Then I would take a hard, unbiased look at our energy policy. I would reach out to the public for their ideas and input. I would put all options on the table and consider each one carefully based on the pros and cons. I would publish our findings on a Maine.gov website and encourage open, transparent debates.
Would you vote to support a woman’s right to obtain an abortion?
Our Constitution supports life. I support life. However, there are many mitigating factors that will never be able to be legislated; the law must reflect that. I believe personal responsibility must be revived in our state. I propose we educate our children about what our Constitution endorses, support parents in their role of developing them into responsible citizens and support those who choose to keep their babies.
What changes would you like to see in the way police do their jobs in Maine?
We need law enforcement. If we want a police force that we can depend on and trust, we need to pay well enough to attract the best of the best. We also need to train them well and hold their supervisors accountable for their training. We must treat our police respectfully for our own safety and for the safety of the police. Maine is one of the safest states in the country. I want to keep it that way.