Promises Kept...

I can actually say that I was able to deliver on many of my campaign promises during my first term as your Kansas State Representative. I am proud of that. I built strong working relationships in both the House and the Senate, and on both sides of the aisles. My appointment to three prominent committees allowed me to introduce amendments making some bills better. I helped make things happen in Kansas and was able to bring good things home to the people of the district. This hasn't happened for a long time in District 1. Here are a few of the promises I delivered on.

I said education was the top priority. The education of our children is the most important part of the state budget. Funding for K-12 education makes up over fifty percent of our budget. The number jumps above sixty percent when we add the funding for higher education. Education budgets were increased during my first term in office. I also voted to return more control of educating our children to the local school boards where it belongs.

I campaigned for lower taxes. I voted to lower the sales tax rate from 6.3% to 6.15%. It passed and was signed into law. Local property taxes in some school districts were also lowered through funding enabled by the education bill passed last session. All five of the school districts 2014-2015 budgets show a reduction in their total USD mill rates. That's good news for property owners.

I was a key figure in passing legislation adding Cherokee and Labette counties to the list of Rural Opportunity Zones. This bill will encourage people from other states to move into Kansas. Many people that work in Kansas are from our neighbor states and these Rural Opportunity Zones may give them an incentive to call Kansas their home. Like I always say, we need more tax payers instead of more taxes.

I campaigned on job creation. I was instrumental in getting legislation passed into law which will allow for an investment of at least a $50 million business venture in our district. Along with the new jobs it will bring, the new casino will also bring revenue back home into our state and county treasuries. It will also spur the development and growth of other new small businesses in our immediate area.

I campaigned against the Affordable Care Act, or Obama-Care. While we were unable to put a complete stop to this, we did create an alternative plan by making it possible for Kansas to enter into a healthcare compact with other states. This would allow the member states to create and control their own healthcare plans and leave the problem ridden plan we are now forced to join or face fines.

I promised to protect our second amendment rights. I sponsored legislation which passed into law during my first term that would prohibit seizure of firearms from law abiding citizens. I also supported legislation which passed into law making Kansas open carry laws the same across the state and would allow Kansas conceal carry permit owners to carry in other states that have reciprocity with us.

These are just a few that I am proud of. There are plenty more which make Kansas more attractive for new business as well as a better and safer place to raise a family. I look forward to next session and the opportunity to serve as your State Representative again. I have drafted several bills I would like to introduce that I believe would be beneficial to our state. 

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Paid for by Mike Houser for State Representative - Rick Jessee, Treasurer.

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