Archive for Thursday, October 23, 2014

Candidate questionnaire: Tom Burroughs, House Dist. 33

October 23, 2014

Incumbent Tom Burroughs, D-Kansas City, is seeking reelection to the 33rd District seat in the Kansas House of Representatives against Republican challenger Sue Adams of Edwardsville.

The district covers Edwardsville, all of Bonner Springs within Wyandotte County, and some areas of Kansas City, Kan.

The following are Adams's responses to The Chieftain's candidate questionnaire.

Age: 59

Occupation: Retired, Colgate-Palmolive Company

Family: Wife, Cathie, daughters Shannon and Lauren, son Ryan

Years lived in district: Lifelong Dotte

Previous political experience: State Representative 1996- present

Other community service: recipient of numerous community service awards

1. What made you decide to run for re-election?

My desire to give back to our community and to serve those that have entrusted me with their continued support. I am honored and humbled by the calls and letters from local leaders, organizations and constituents supporting my campaign. I will continue to advocate for our community in a manner that is respectful of our diversity and represents the values we hold dear.

2. What special qualifications would you bring to this office?

As a member of Leadership in the Kansas House of Representatives it has allowed me to strategically advocate for our community. I have had perfect attendance in all eighteen years in the legislature. I make mention of this not to brag but to reflect my commitment to my constituents. They have entrusted me to be their voice and advocate for our district and I believe it is my responsibility to be present in Topeka every day during the legislative session. My ability to work across the aisle with others demonstrates my bi-partisanship. I have been extremely successful in sponsoring legislation that has garnered support for job growth, education, gaming and public safety.

3. How do you plan to stay in touch with constituents if you are elected?

I do my very best to return calls , emails and letters to those that contact me about their issues, community events or questions and concerns. During the legislative session I send out two newsletters updating and informing my constituents on the issues being debated and or signed into law. I commute daily and return to the district to attend city council meetings, events and forums. I have a web site, published cell and home phone numbers, facebook page, email and office phone. I am visible in the community and value public contacts.

4. In campaigning, what issue have you found is most important for constituents in your district? How would you address this issue?

Education is the issue I hear more during my door to door. There is much concern over the funding cuts, larger class sizes, pay to play programs and rising cost of college tuition. The cuts have impacted all school districts in our state and have put our childrens education opportunities in great peril. The attack on teachers and the disrespect for public education continues to undermine our children's educational future. We must restore funding for our schools, recruit and retain quality teachers and partner with the Kansas Regents to control the cost of higher education. Our children deserve a quality education and I will continue to advocate for them.

5. In your own opinion (aside from or in addition to the above issue), what are the three most important issues facing the state and how would you address them?

Priorities set within the budget. In my many years of service I have never witnessed the disrespect for public education, teachers, State employees, local government and working families by an Administration. We are all Kansans and deserve to have equal opportunity to achieve individual success. Our children deserve qualified teachers and smaller classrooms, local leaders should be able to retain local control, State employees should be free from political influence/pressure and working families should have a government that values and respects their hard work. The present budget does not reflect these long held Kansas values. Our fiscal and tax policies have put our State at great risk. Our bond rating has twice been downgraded raising the cost of doing business. Our most vulnerable are underserved and our rural communities continue to lose population. We must restore common sense to the budget process that respects all Kansans and reflects sound fiscal policies. Kansans deserve better! I stand ready to do my part.

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