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Why are you running for office?

Butler County is the top in the state when it comes to job creation and wage growth.  That means we have more people with more money supporting our business.  We have one of the top 20 fastest wage increases in the nation, and that is good for our families.

We are on our way to eliminate our general obligation debt by 2020 as a county.

This success did not happen by accident.  It takes conservative leadership and discipline.  It means making the tough decisions. But when you look at our success, those decisions are paying dividends for our employers, our workforce and our families. 

I am the only candidate that offers the experience of making these conservative choices at the county level. I am the only candidate with countywide success.  I offer four more years of making Butler County even greater.

We are just getting started.  Let’s keep going!

What are the 3 biggest challenges facing Butler County?

One of the best problems to have is an influx of great, high-paying jobs.  This growth means we must work harder in providing a well-trained, ready workforce to our new employers.

Another challenge is the smart growth of the I-75 corridor.  We must work to make certain that we coordinate with local governments, chambers of commerce, employers and the residents of our county.  Every stakeholder has a vision and idea of what our future growth will look like, and we want to be smart about it.  We want meaningful growth that adds value to Butler County rather than new areas of strip malls.

A third challenge is to retain our conservative discipline.  Voters have three dependable commissioners who they can count on to keep spending in check and to encourage smart growth.  As we pay off our debt, we must continue to maintain a strong discipline to keep spending low and to be good stewards in office.

What will you do to bring jobs to Butler County?

With Butler County being the top job growth county in Ohio, with high wage growth, we will continue doing what we are good at – creating a business friendly environment for job growth.

The Butler County Commissioners have an arsenal of economic growth tools that we can use to attract employers.

Bringing jobs to Butler County is important, but we need to make certain that we are attracting the RIGHT jobs to Butler County.  We utilize our development powers to attract jobs in biomedical, aerospace, tech and other sectors with high wages.

I am the only candidate with the right focus on bringing meaningful jobs to Butler County with high wages.  We have been successful in doing this, and we will continue this effective approach.

What can be done to deal with the rapid growth in the county?

Butler County can continue to use its many development tools in order to respond to, and plan for continued growth.  For instance, we utilized the Port Authority to support a project that the City of Hamilton started in order to bring over 100 market rate housing units to downtown Hamilton.  Commissioners need to look at every facet of the county in order to plan growth including:

·       Education and workforce development

·       Lifestyle offerings and amenities

·       Affordable housing

·       Transportation

·       Great services

·       And many other qualities

We have been successful in creating a growth environment.  Our success is brought about by the decisions we have made, and the next four years are even more promising growth years than the last four as we pay off the County’s debt.

What will you do as a commissioner to fight the opioid crisis?

In my current term as Commissioner, I helped spearhead an initiative to identify drug addicted mothers and to bring them to treatment.  We work to help them be responsible mothers, have a successful recovery, improve parenting skills, find a job and a place they can call home.  Every mother we help is helping her entire family stay out of the cycle of drug abuse.

As a member of the Opiate Task Force, I serve with the local providers who share their success stories and challenges they have had to overcome. We know that the most successful programs are the ones that treat both the addiction and any underlying mental health problems. Solutions are complicated and expensive; however, we have made real progress. In county government, our programs serve many people with substance abuse issues and we are facing the problem head-on by developing innovative solutions:

·       Planning in-home incarceration to reduce the cost of jailing

·       Opening  a family drug court for Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court

·       Providing continued support and funding for  the Common Pleas Drug Court

·       Convening a county Stepping Up Committee, a state and national initiative, to study and coordinate mental health and substance abuse treatment services, provided by non-county agencies, that begin in the jail then follow the individual as he or she re-enters the community.

·       Establishing treatment services for parents who enter the Children’s Services system with substance abuse issues. Providing specialized services to implement recovery plans that focus on good parenting and ensure the health and safety of children in our care.

·       Addressing the growing issue of patients who require substance abuse treatment and nursing home care in the Butler County Care Facility. Providing professional, individualized plans of care for the patients and their families. Butler County leads the way with innovative solutions for long-time addicts who require services for the elderly.

The Board of Commissioners has had success in creating public-private partnerships in recognition that the problem is greater reaching than just addiction. Families are being broken apart, children are suffering, employers are facing challenges, and taxpayers are burdened with the costs. However, we are making a difference and must continue to make a difference by remaining flexible, responsive and committed to finding solutions that work.

Where do you stand on tax issues?

Butler County has the lowest sales tax rate in the state.  Despite much pressure in my years as Commissioner to take the “easy” path to raise the sales tax, we held the line.  And it was the right thing to do.

We expect much from the agencies who come to us asking for levies.  We combined mental health and drug addiction services during my tenure in office, and this has created savings for taxpayers and better service to our vulnerable communities.

We have sent many of our core team to LEAN Ohio training for process improvement during my current term, and the skills that those employees brought back have paid dividends as we improved our services without paying more for them.

As your current County Commissioner on the ballot this year, I am proud to report that we are incredible stewards of your tax dollars.  We fight tax raises while improving services and eliminating debt.  It does not get any more conservative than that.

What else do you want the voters to know about you?I would like voters to know how much I care about Butler County. Our cities, townships and villages each have their own rich history and direction for the future. This diverse county has something for everyone. You can raise your children in a revitalized urban area or on a farm and rest assured that your children will receive and exceptional education be welcomed into the community. Families can enjoy the arts, fine dining, historical sites and world class sporting events. Although our communities have different amenities to offer, they have one thing in common, the people make them special. I believe that Butler County is the best place to live, work and grow. I am proud of my heritage and proud to be a Butler Countian.

Carpenter for Commissioner Committee
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