District 54B candidate viewpoint: Denny McNamaraWhile we have turned Minnesota’s economy around and made tremendous progress on many other legislative issues over the past two years, we can and will do better. With your help, we can make our community and our state a better place to live, work and play. I respectfully ask for your vote on Nov. 6.
By: Denny McNamara, South Washington County Bulletin
Following the 2010 election, Minnesota was facing a projected $6.2 billion budget deficit, high unemployment and state government spending that was spiraling out of control.
Thanks to the legislative choices made since 2011, that projected deficit was turned into a $1.3 billion surplus. State budget reserves that were bare have now been replenished. Minnesota’s unemployment rates fell from 7.5 percent to 5.7 percent, and 40,000 Minnesotans have found a new job. State government was forced to live within its means, and the economy has responded; Minnesota revenue collections have exceeded previous projections in every report since February.
While it’s clear we are now heading down the right path toward fiscal recovery, there’s more work to be done. Many of our families are struggling financially. Some have lost jobs. All are dealing with increased costs, from food to gasoline.
I am fully aware that you need to keep more of your paychecks, not less, during these trying economic times. And that’s why I’m committed to protecting your pocketbook and fighting for you in the Minnesota House.
We also need to do a better job of prioritizing our spending. I believe that educating our children is the number one priority of the Legislature. Last year we succeeded in giving local schools more funding than they’ve ever had in our state’s history. This was welcome news as it’s important our children have access to the quality education they deserve. We also need to prioritize those who are unable to take care of themselves, such as our developmentally disabled and elderly residents.
We also must continue to preserve our land, air and waterways. As chairman of the House Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Policy and Finance Committee, I am proud of my bipartisan work with Gov. Mark Dayton’s administration to pass good, common-sense environmental legislation and much-needed permitting reform over the last two years.
And we must continue to reform government. Over the past two years, legislative leadership and Dayton have passed dozens of reform measures that make government more efficient and will save taxpayers billions of dollars.
It has truly been an honor to serve as your voice in the Minnesota House, and I am asking for your support once again. I have a proven record of getting the job done for area residents, for understanding the issues that are important to our communities and for passing laws on a bipartisan basis.
This is a job I have always taken very seriously. Every year, I continue to walk door to door throughout our district to meet with citizens in order to learn about their concerns and problems. This input is critical as I make decisions in the Minnesota House.
Like you, I’ve experienced the peaks and valleys that come with raising a family, running a business and trying to make ends meet. I’ve always felt this real-world experience is extremely beneficial toward making decisions that impact families and area business owners.
I also believe legislators should represent their constituents, not special interests, which is why I have yet to accept one penny in campaign contributions from special interest groups, lobbyists or PACs since serving as your state representative.
It remains a privilege to serve as your state representative. This seat I hold is yours, and I will continue to be accessible and available to you in addressing your interests and concerns through surveys, phone calls, emails and community meetings.
While we have turned Minnesota’s economy around and made tremendous progress on many other legislative issues over the past two years, we can and will do better. With your help, we can make our community and our state a better place to live, work and play. I respectfully ask for your vote on Nov. 6.