Meet Your 2016 Candidates: Those running for Senate and House answer questions

In an effort to help area voters get to know the local candidates for the Legislature and their stands on some important issues, the Addison Independent asked those running for House and Senate to answer a short questionnaire. There are competitive races for most of the seats representing Addison County.
The three candidates running for the two seats in the Addison-1 House district, which encompasses Middlebury, include incumbent Democrat Amy Sheldon, Democratic challenger Robin Scheu and Progressive Jill Charbonneau.
Running unopposed for the one seat in the Addison-2 House district — which encompasses Cornwall, Goshen, Hancock, Leicester, Ripton and Salisbury — is newcomer Peter Conlon.
In the Addison-3 House district — which has two seats representing the towns of Waltham, Panton, Ferrisburgh and Addison and the city of Vergennes — there are four candidates on the ballot: incumbent Democrat Diane Lanpher of Vergennes and incumbent Republican Warren Van Wyck of Ferrisburgh, plus Ferrisburgh Democrat Fritz Langrock and Ferrisburgh Republican Monique Thurston.
Incumbent Republican Fred Baser and Democrat David Sharpe, both of Bristol, are both running  for re-election in the two-seat Addison-4 district of Bristol, Lincoln, Monkton and Starksboro. They will face Republican Valerie Mullin of Monkton and Progressive/Democrat Mari Cordes of Lincoln.
The two candidates running for the one seat in the Addison-5 House district — which represents Bridport, New Haven and Weybridge — are incumbent Republican Harvey Smith of New Haven and challenger Taborri Bruhl, a New Haven Democrat.
In the Addison-Rutland-1 district of Shoreham, Orwell, Whiting and Benson, independent incumbent Alyson Eastman of Orwell will be on the ballot.
Incumbent Democrats Claire Ayer of Addison and Christopher Bray of New Haven are running for re-election in the two-seat Addison County Senate district, which also represents Huntington and Buel’s Gore. They face Republican challengers Peter Briggs of Addison and Lynn Dyke of Bristol.
The following questions, along with a requested word limit, were asked of each local candidate. 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. 8.
1) HEALTH CARE: What role should government play in health care and what have we learned from our experience with Vermont Health Connect that can inform policy going forward? (100 words)
2) SCHOOLS: Student debt after college has skyrocketed. How do we prepare our young people for life beyond high school and keep the cost in a range that the average Vermonter can afford? (100 words)
3) ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: What’s your strategy to promote job growth in Vermont, how is worker training a part of that strategy, and how would you pay for your plan? (150 words)
4) OPIATE ADDICTION: This epidemic is plaguing our society and draining resources; as a legislator what would you do to deal with this problem? (100 words)
5) RENEWABLE ENERGY: Has the state moved far enough on regulation of renewable energy siting, and what further steps, if any, would you take as a legislator? (100 words)
6) AGRICULTURE: What policies would you work toward to support and encourage Vermont agriculture while also improving water quality? (100 words)
7)  CANDIDATE’S CHOICE: Provide comment on the topic of your choice. (100 words)
One word answer) Yes or No: If marijuana legalization comes before the House this coming session, would you vote for it?
Click the name of the candidate and see their answers:
Senate Candidate Claire Ayer Q & A
Senate Candidate Christopher Bray Q & A
Senate Candidate Peter Briggs Q & A
Senate Candidate Lynn Dike Q & A
Add-1 Candidate Jill Charbonneau Q & A
Add-1 Candidate Robin Scheu Q & A
Add-1 Candidate Amy Sheldon Q & A
Add-2 Candidate Peter Conlon Q & A
Add-3 Candidate Fritz Langrock Q & A
Add-3 Candidate Diane Lanpher Q & A
Add-3 Candidate Monique Thurston Q & A
Add-3 Candidate Warren Van Wyck Q & A
Add-4 Candidate Fred Baser Q & A
Add-4 Candidate Mari Cordes Q & A
Add-4 Candidate Valerie Mullin Q & A
Add-4 Candidate Dave Sharpe Q & A
Add-5 Candidate Taborri Bruhl Q & A
Add-5 Candidate Harvey Smith Q & A
Addison-Rutland Candidate Alyson Eastman Q & A

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