Miller challenges Rhoads
Incumbent Rhonda Rhoads, a Republican from Corydon, is seeking a second term as State Representative for District 70, which includes most of Harrison County and parts of Floyd and Clark counties. She is being challenged by Democrat Terry L. Miller of Elizabeth. State representatives are elected to two-year terms and are not restricted to term limits. Questionnaires were sent to both candidates. Below are their responses.
Terry L. Miller
Family: Married 42 years to Tana Simpson Miller. Children: Travis, Desley and Noelle; daughter-in-law: Allison; son-in-law: Gary. Grandchildren: Trent, Claire, Hunter and Kathryn
Education/occupation/ political experience: 1964 graduate of St. Joseph Elementary. 1968 graduate of South Central Junior-Senior High School. Security policeman in the U.S. Air Force 1970-1974. Completed a machinist apprenticeship with the L&N Railroad. I hold 3 licenses with the Indiana Dept. of Environmental Management: WT-3 Water Treatment; DSL – Distribution System Large; AS-O Wastewater. 1 license with the Indiana Dept. of Insurance: Resident Producer Indv./Qualifications – Property and Casualty. We have an 80-acre farm where we raise beef cattle and hay. Retired as superintendent of a water utility. Harrison County Commissioner 17.5 years. Taylor Township Precinct Committee Chair for over 15 years. Harrison County Democrat Chairman for 3 years.
Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? I feel that District 70 deserves to be represented in the state of Indiana. I will not go to Indianapolis and be a rubber stamp. I do not believe that bringing business into Indiana means that we have to be anti-labor. I do not believe that dismantling our public school system is the answer to better education. I pledge to you that I will work for solutions to problems in a manner that is best for District 70.
Last session saw several major legislative issues passed, including right-to-work and school vouchers. What issue(s) do you believe should be at the forefront during the next session (in 150 words or less)? Some items that have been proposed by the majority party, who currently enjoys a 60 to 40 advantage, are: Further reducing public school funding — Public schools should have funding restored. Reduction in staff, larger class sizes and longer hours for teachers are issues that have been demoralizing and ineffective in improving education. I will work for a strong public school system. With the 60-40 advantage, there will be a further push to eliminate organized labor. I see this issue as an attack against all working-class people in this state. It makes no difference if you belong to a union or not, as union wages drop, so will wages and benefits for all workers. I will fight for families in District 70. There was a law proposed by our representative that said that a school could be made into a charter school by a simple vote of 51 percent of parents with children in that public school. This would remove local control from that school. Taxpayers would still be paying the taxes but would have no say in the way their taxes are spent on local schools. I will fight to stop this proposed law.
The state reportedly has a $2 billion surplus. How would you disperse it in 100 words or less)? Money should be used to make the new bridges that are going to be built in Louisville toll free. This would reduce costs for District 70 residents who have to travel to Kentucky every day. This would make it easier for all Southern Indiana businesses to operate. It would take less than $7 million to complete funding for the Corydon West interchange that I would support. Schools should have their funding restored. Any excess should be refunded.
Contact information for voters: Home 969-2398; cell 972-4780; Facebook: Terry Miller for State Rep 70; e-mail: [email protected]
Family: Married to Les Rhoads, hardware salesman with Orgil Inc. for 19 years; one son, Derrick Delaney, wife Kelley and grandchildren Logan and Ava; stepdaughters Wendy Delaney and Danette Rhoads
Education/occupation/ political experience: Graduate of North Central High School (now North Harrison High School), 1968; Associate of Arts, Freed-Hardeman College (now University); Bachelor of Science, Indiana State University; Master of Science in education, Indiana University; full-time babysitter for my 2-year-old grandson; retired elementary teacher in the North Harrison Community School Corp. after 29 years (23 years in kindergarten, 6 years in second grade); taught at Indianapolis Christian School; taught at Indianapolis Day Nursery; past treasurer of the Harrison County Republican Central Committee; elected Harrison County Council-at-large in 2000; top vote-getter of the 3 elected council-at-large; council became a Republican majority for the first time ever in the county’s history in 2001; re-elected again in 2004; was vice chairman of the council for 2005-06; elected State Representative District 70 in 2010; have served 2 years in the House
Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? I am running for re-election because I want to find out how well I represented my constituents. I felt I was elected to be the voice of those who had not been heard over the years. If the good people of District 70 are pleased with my representation of their ideas and thoughts, then I want them to have the opportunity to put me back in for another two years. I have learned the process by which I can better serve my constituents. Writing bills that help my constituents but also help those in the whole state is important.
Last session saw several major legislative issues passed, including right-to-work and school vouchers. What issue(s) do you believe should be at the forefront during the next session (in 150 words or less)? We need to pass a structurally balanced budget again for 2013-14. Living within our means is important, just as living within our family budgets are important. We have now been rated AAA by three bond-rating companies. With more companies coming to Indiana, more jobs will come. More tax dollars will flow into our coffers. Sales tax income will also increase and that means a stronger state financially. More families can increase their incomes. More homes can be built. More truly needy people can be helped. We must continue to help our students get the skills they will need to be competitive in the Indiana workplace. We do that by helping our teachers and principals become the very best at their jobs they can be. And when they reach their potential, we should give them acknowledgment that they are doing a great job, both by word and financial means.
The state reportedly has a $2 billion surplus. How would you disperse it in 100 words or less)? 150 representatives in Indiana make that determination. In the 2011-12 budget, 10 percent of any monies above the budget is to stay in the general fund for emergency purposes. It takes approximately $40 million a day to run state government. The rest is divided equally between the Pension Stabilization Fund for promised pensions and the citizens in Indiana that are paying income tax. This year that should be at least $100 per income taxpayer. We all know that any monies returned to the taxpayer will be used to help with “their” needs. After all, it is their money.
Contact information for voters: (Did not answer)