Issues

Issues

Issues

Thomas Jefferson: The government closest to the people serves the people best.

Before each vote, I ask myself:

  • How is this bill going to affect your liberty? More bills usually mean more government. More government means more restrictions. More restrictions mean less freedom. We are at our best when we are free.
  • How is this bill going to affect your pocketbook? The money you make is your money. If you want to spend your money on trips to the water park instead of having it reconnoitered for trail head signs in St. George, you should be able to.
  • How is this bill going to affect your safety? Of the limited powers we grant government, public safety may be the most important. The balance comes between what protects us to pursue happiness, and what strips our rights in the name of safety.

Taxes

Every tax dollar Utah has is your money. Good tax policy is transparent and fair. Utah is currently ranked 21st in the nation for total burden on taxpayers; in other words, 29 states have lower tax burdens than Utah. How can that be you ask? Last year Utah had more than $500 million in surplus and yet passed a bill to increase taxes by more than $170 million and if a gas tax poll passes on the November ballot, that could increase the taxes by $400 million. This tax increase came after the state raised your property and gas taxes twice in the previous three years.

  • HB25: Rewrote the property tax system to close an annual hidden property tax increase (2016)
  • HB21: Fixed a calculation for revenue growth that was above the tax collection rate (2018)
  • HB265: Got rid of vehicle safety inspections and tax, (finally) (2017)
  • HB405: Worked to close a loophole in the tax system that favors non-profit hospitals (2018)
  • HB376: Worked to allow more local control in law enforcement (2018)
  • HB255: Required full disclosure of the tax rate increase on initiatives (2017)

Limited Government

When government expands, freedom contracts. Frequently, there is a cry to do “something” to prevent or cause change. Anytime we ask the government to act, we take away the ability of the community to come together for a solution. We must limit the scope of state government so that you and your family may be free. I wish more people paid close attention to the incursions of the state into their lives. A limited government provides what is needed and no more. It doesn’t pick winners and losers and doesn’t take a right away from one to give it to another.

  • HB362: Increased government transparency
  • HJR13: Added transparency to the number of bill requests a lawmaker requested (2018)
  • SB122: Limited bonds to the amount authorized by voters (2018)
  • HB300: Protected the public interest and your privacy with police body cameras 
  • HB349: Ended the practice of giving government employees convicted of a felony during their work a full pension (2016)

Education

Education is the cornerstone of a free society. The State Constitution requires the Legislature to “provide for the establishment and maintenance of the state’s education systems.” The State needs to fund our schools equally and protect the parent’s ability to guide and choose what is right for their children.

  • HB2: Fought to increase teacher compensation and fend off a teacher shortage (2017 & 2018)
  • HB2: Ended the practice requiring teachers pay a fee to their employer to keep their jobs (2017)
  • SB43: Created a firearm safety and violence prevention program in public schools
  • HB345: Ended the practice of giving former sex offenders a teaching license (2015)
  • HB490: Worked to increase the grants that improve education for disabled students
  • SB87: Improved school safety by allowing locks on classroom doors during an active shooting (2018)

Economic Development

When people say economic development they frequently mean economic subsidy. Using tax incentives to bring business into the state is a dangerous precedent and one that needs to be carefully reviewed. Oftentimes, equitable and transparent tax policy is the best way to incentivize commerce.

  • HB25: Created an oversite committee to review tax incentive proposals (2017)

Civic Involvement

  • Chair Education Appropriations Committee
  • Chair Economic Development Legislative Liaison Committee
  • Chair House Information Technology Committee
  • Chair Judicial Rules Review Committee
  • Former Chair Indigent Defense Committee
  • Former Chair House Revenue and Taxation Committee

Recognition

  • Taxpayer Advocate of the Year, Utah Taxpayers Association
  • Defender of Liberty, Libertas Institute
  • Champion of Prosperity, Americans for Prosperity
  • Friend of the Taxpayer (95% Lifetime Rating), Utah Taxpayer Association 
  • Business Champion, Utah Business Coalition
  • Small Business Champion, National Federation of Independent Business
  • Endorsed by the National Rifle Association