Sunday, October 19, 2008
League of Women Voters election survey: Robert M. Pritchett, candidate for the Texas House Rep. - District 100
The League of Women Voters of Dallas sent a questionnaire to every candidate running for public office in Dallas County.
The League of Women Voters of Dallas sent a questionnaire to every candidate running for public office in Dallas County. The election on November 4th features a number of local races to decide state and national Senate and House of Representatives seats.
The responses of Robert M. Pritchett (L), who is seeking election to the Texas House of Representatives - District 100 seat, appear below. Pritchett is running against Rep. Terri Hodge (D), the incumbent.
LWV: Please describe the training and experience that qualify you for this office.
Pritchett: I’ve been an entrepreneur and consultant and Libertarian for years, so I understand better than most that you have to spend less than you make, and the money you make depends on serving your customers’ needs.
LWV: The Texas Legislature in 2007 overhauled business taxes to provide property tax relief for homeowners, but many small business owners in Texas now claim that their property tax decrease was far less than their business tax increase. What measures should be taken to maintain adequate state tax revenues without unduly burdening individual taxpayers or small business?
Pritchett: Use the alleged surplus if any to provide real property tax relief, but more importantly, quit spending money on things that government should not be doing in the first place. Then the sales tax should be more than enough for all the legitimate programs, and no property or income or business taxes would be needed. Also implement a workable silver money plan statewide to help protect from inflation. See my website.
LWV: Texas deregulated electricity rates with the promise that competition between suppliers would lower consumers’ electric rates, yet rates in Texas remain well above the national average. What measures should be taken to ensure electric power reliability and affordability in Texas?
Pritchett: I haven’t researched this issue but it sounds like there’s still too much government involvement somewhere, like poorly designed environmental regulations and energy subsidies or restrictions. A truly free market would develop much better and cheaper solutions with higher quality, better customer service, and probably less pollution as well.
LWV: According to the most recent published data of the Texas Office of Public Insurance Counsel, insurance industry losses in Texas have decreased by 85%, yet homeowners’ rates have fallen by only 4%. What reforms would you support to lower homeowners’ rates in Texas?
Pritchett: Less government interference should work better here too. Regulatory agencies turn out to be industry lapdogs rather than watchdogs, and raise costs of entry, thus stifling competition. That’s how it tends to work in all industries – more government makes almost everything worse, not better.
LWV: The Texas legislature has not increased the gas tax since 1991, and also diverts millions of dollars of transportation funds to other areas of the state budget such as education and the Department of Public Safety. The public has voiced much disapproval of toll roads and public/private partnerships to build new roads. How would you fund construction of new roads and maintenance of existing roads and bridges?
Pritchett: Stop diverting the gas tax; use it for maintenance. Totally new roads in different areas (if really needed) could possibly be funded by tolls. All state contract money should be paid only to Texas companies and citizens, not even indirectly to noncitizens or foreign companies.
LWV: If diversions from the State’s transportation fund are stopped, how would you pay for those items that are currently funded by gas tax monies?
Pritchett: Everything that benefits only certain people should be paid for by those people via user fees or as close as possible; the gas tax approximates general usage by mile. Also see answer to (2) above.
LWV: Currently, sales prices of most residential property are disclosed while those of commercial property are not. Do you support public disclosure of commercial real estate sales prices so as to ensure fair and accurate appraisals?
Pritchett: Interesting idea, I’m not sure. I’d rather not violate anyone’s privacy, including home sales. See answer to (2) above and we can get rid of property taxes entirely and make this question moot.
Pegasus News Content partner - League of Women Voters
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