Dear Voters & Supporters.
My campaign staff, volunteers, and I are very proud of the campaign that we ran. Of course it would have been better to have won or received a higher percentage of votes, but the issues that we raised, the solutions that we presented and the ensuing debate that we created made a difference. I firmly believe that the thousands of people who voted for me know what I stood for and agree with the majority of my platform. I also believe that other candidates, who either won or lost, can't make the same assertion. Kent For House ran a campaign free of dirty innuendoes and free of corporate or special interest influence. As my wife and campaign coordinator, Salle, has said, "it isn't often that a person gets a chance to voice his or her opinions so freely to such a large audience of people.” The trick is to get them to hear you and to understand the significance and the meaning of your words. Thank you for hearing me!
On November 2nd, vote your hopes and your dreams not your fears. Put Kent Solberg in the Arizona State House of Representatives!
Welcome to the website dedicated to Kent Solberg’s run for the AZ House from Legislative District 27!
This campaign is based on issues. Here you can discover what Kent’s ideas are, the Green Perspective that they are based upon and why Southern Arizona needs new direction!
You have the chance to watch and connect to Kent’s campaign as it grows. You may find a place to participate in this new direction. You can get to know Kent and his dedication and concern for the unique Sonoran Desert and the people who enjoy her beauty and majesty.
You and your support, whether volunteering to work or putting up a yard sign or voting for Kent in November, are the power behind any change in our Government and in our world.
We thank you for visiting and hope you come to be a friend.
If you have any questions or comments, please call (520) 882-8712 or send an eMail to Kent.
It’s All About The Issues
What do State Legislators do?
They pass the laws and write the budget for the State of Arizona. Clearly the State Legislature has NOT been doing a good job. In this time of recession and reduction of state revenues, we need a State Legislature that will better prioritize our needs, make the tough decisions, and help build a future that is prosperous and fulfilling for all of our citizens. The Legislature needs a person like Kent who is both a thinker and a fixer!
"The care of human life and happiness is the first and only legitimate object of good government."
Among Kent’s major campaign issues are: Economy & Jobs, Legislature – It’s Time To Fix It!, Our Schools, and Managing our severely limited Water Supply.
Arizona is at a crossroads; the decisions we make in the next few years will affect not just our economy and our environment, but the quality of life that our children and we will enjoy for decades to come.
Our struggling economy needs a strong, steady hand from the Legislature, and leadership which embraces, and advocates for, bold new initiatives that will stimulate economic growth by giving Arizona a head start on the high-tech industries of the future. These industries will create sustainable, high paying jobs that will be around for a long time to come, and will motivate our workforce with real opportunities for advancement and innovation. As these jobs should and will provide a living wage, our economy will be further strengthened by these workers's spending.
Our economy can only benefit from, and our citizens need, a single-payer health care system (Medicare for All). This will help small businesses and high tech start-ups, become more competitive, as they won't be burdened by escalating and unpredictable insurance costs. And, it's just the right thing to do for Arizonans.
We need a Legislature that makes fiscal decisions that benefit the average citizen, instead of decisions that gratify the special interests motivated by profit-at-any-cost, and by obscure personal agendas. We need a Legislature that understands basic budgetary and economic principles, and that isn’t afraid to make hard decisions during both good and bad economic times. We need a legislature that doesn’t meddle in the local economic affairs of our counties, cities and towns. And lastly, we need a legislature that does not interfere with or hinder economic recovery and job creation, whether through irresponsible fiscal planning or through actions such as passage of SB1070, which may well result in economic boycotts against Arizona Businesses, tourism and travel, and damage the good name of the state. (Read more...)
Over the past four years, the Arizona State Legislature has been about as irresponsible as anyone can possibly imagine! It's only gotten worse in the last two years. The proper role of government is to protect our citizens and improve their lives. Kent believes that the only solution is to do some heavy-duty housecleaning, both in its personnel and in its very structure.
Here are some examples of our current Legislature's mistakes:
By law, our State budget must be balanced each year. This is a good thing, if handled wisely. Not so long ago, when the economy was better, Arizona actually had a budget surplus! The Legislature should have done the responsible thing and put most of this surplus into its Rainy Day Fund, to be used for future difficult times (and make a few bucks in interest for the State) - just like a responsible family would do.
Instead the Legislature went on an ill-conceived tax-cutting binge, giving tax dollars back not to ordinary citizens, but rather large corporations, well-off individuals, and special interest groups. They squandered a great opportunity to build up the Rainy Day Fund for hard times like we 're going through now. From the perspective of fiscal year 2010, these actions of just a few years ago look quite foolish! With harder times came the current budget deficit crisis. Instead of reversing their mistake, the Legislature plowed ahead, trying to balance the budget through economic skullduggery and regressive taxation, and smoke-and-mirrors.
They began trying to cover our budget shortfall by deferring payments that were already overdue, thus increasing the interest we'll end up paying. They made huge cuts to schools & universities, social services, and health care, jeopardizing our State’s economic future by depriving us of an economically productive base of healthy, well-educated citizens. They passed the buck to other government agencies (i.e., by shifting expenses to counties, cities and local police departments), forcing them to try to take up the slack with money that they don't have.
Incredibly, the Legislature has resorted to selling State assets to corporations; they even sold off our State Capitol Building, and signed a long-term lease for its use. They poured money into advertising the Arizona State Lottery in an effort to balance the budget on the backs of the poor, the struggling, and the working class. This would be laughable if it weren’t so tragic. Our children and grandchildren will be paying for the misguided actions of this Legislature for decades to come.
Finally, in May of this year, they convinced Arizona voters to come out and support Proposition 100; they said we had no way to balance the budget but to further increase the State’s already bloated sales tax, a tax that takes a disproportionate percentage of income from the poor and middle class than it does from the wealthy. All this was done to cover a rising deficit, which they (by and large) created by cutting taxes to the wealthiest constituents of our state.
The tragedy is that most of this did not have to happen. When the budgetary process works right, our tax dollars are spent wisely, and the future economy is not threatened by huge, unsustainable debt. During times of economic downturn, State government spending, derived from the Rainy Day Fund, is necessary to prop up a slowing economy and to spur recovery. Such spending can also guarantee that those most affected by the downturn (the unemployed and underemployed, the poor, those with the least resources to withstand these down times) can rely on consistent government programs and services which are particularly needed during those slower times, thus fulfilling one of the major promises of government: the protection of its citizens. (Read more...)
What better way to impart to our children the knowledge and strength they will need to face the adult world than to provide them with a first-rate public education? Few areas of public policy are as important for the future of our state as the education of our children.
Our state and local public school districts have the primary responsibility to put together the nuts and bolts of the educational process. It’s through these basics, aided by the partnership of parents, students, teachers, and administrators that the everyday experience of learning takes place.
But we in Arizona are not doing our jobs. Arizona ranks 2nd in the country in school dropouts, and 49th in the country in education spending per student. One in ten teenage girls are pregnant before the age of 17. And these statistics are from the period prior to the most recent series of draconian budget cuts aimed at our schools and universities, which will, undoubtedly, exacerbate these problems.
But these are more than mere statistics. These are lives in jeopardy. These are children crying out for us to do our jobs. These are families, and voters, asking why their elected officials don’t fulfill the promises that they make, and rise to meet their own rhetoric.
During these hard economic times of budget shortfalls and rising costs, education cuts seem to some to be necessary. But it's shortsighted to solve these problems on the backs of our children; parents would never try to balance a family budget by asking their children to eat fewer vegetables! In the short term, our funding for education must remain level. In the long term, as our economy rebounds, this funding must be increased to a level commensurate with our political rhetoric on the importance of education.
Kent pledges, once elected, to do everything in his power to reverse the devastating cuts to our educational system imposed by our Legislature over the last two years; as the economy improves, Kent will fight to assign a great deal of any increased state revenues to Arizona's educational system. Nothing is more important to him than the quality of the education we provide to our children. (Read more...)
There is no doubt that our Sonoran Desert is a glorious and wonderful place. The mountains, valleys, cacti and other vegetation as well as the numerous animals and their habitats are all part of our Sonoran Desert home. Thankfully Webster’s definition of a desert, “an arid barren tract incapable of supporting any considerable population without an artificial water supply,” doesn’t apply here. But can we afford to keep pressing our luck?
Pima County’s population is over 1 million people and we continue to rapidly grow! Tucson’s aquifer continues to drop 4 ft per year and we continue to rapidly grow! There are plans being drawn up now to recharge our aquifer, our drinking, cooking and bathing water, with treated effluent and we continue to rapidly grow! We must plan realistically for the long-term use of this most precious resource now, before it becomes a crisis.
There are no easy solutions. But our current leadership has chosen to merely gloss over or ignore altogether these alarming trends. They try to pretend there is no long-term problem by looking at the State through “aqua colored glasses” instead! Responsible leadership means looking squarely at the situation, taking appropriate actions, and planning for the long term. (Read more...)