The following seven questions, along with a requested word limit, were asked of each local candidate for the Vermont House.
The questions are not repeated in the context of each candidate’s response, but are recalled by subject at the beginning of each answer.
Election Day is Nov. 4.
1) HEALTHCARE: The state’s Catamount Health plan is up and running, are you satisfied that it is meeting its goals and, if not, what additional steps should the state take to expand health care coverage? (Maximum 150 words.)
2) ELECTRICITY: The expiration of Vermont’s contracts with its two big electricity providers, Hydro-Quebec and Vermont Yankee, is looming. And there are concerns about re-licensing Yankee. What should Vermont do to meet its energy needs? (150 words.)
3) AGRICULTURE: What state-level supports and policies regarding family farms would you promote as a legislator? (150 words.)
4) PROPERTY TAXES: The idea of a property tax cap to limit the rise in school spending has been suggested, but such reductions in funds could diminish the quality of education in our schools over time. How do you solve that dilemma? (150 words.)
5) HEATING: Vermonters are worried about how they will pay to heat their homes and gas up their cars this winter. What can the Legislature and state government do to help? (150 words.)
6) ECONOMY: State government is cutting back as tax revenues fall short of expectations. What can state government do to improve the Vermont economy? (150 words.)
7) SINGLE ISSUE: Discuss an issue of importance to you that you would work to address if elected. (100 words.)
In the race for the Addison-2 House seat — which represents Cornwall, Goshen, Hancock, Leicester, Ripton and Salisbury — John “Ike” Hughes faces Willem Jewett.
I received a candidate questioner from the paper on Oct. 14, 2008. The questions — about healthcare, electricity, agriculture, property taxes, heating and the economy — along with my voters’ concerns on several other issues — such as Jessica’s Law, roads and bridges, growing town budgets and business growth in the state — are on the minds of every Addison 2 voter.
Ever since that date I have researched (hundreds of pages), studied canned answers, written and deleted information on my word processor and then I came to one conclusion: if I knew the answers and solutions to all these difficult issues, I should be running and winning the race for governor.
I can only promise the Addison 2 voters that I will work every day as hard as I can for smaller, more responsive government, shorter legislative sessions, less taxes. Mary and I have not asked for fund for my House run and we have returned any unsolicited funds for my campaign. I will promise the Addison 2 voters the same frugality when it comes to your taxes.
I would like to thank everyone who has worked on my behalf during this campaign.