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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Utah House District 15

The Utah House of Representatives is comprised of 75 men and women, each representing different areas of the state, elected to two-year terms.

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    Ammon Gruwell
    (UU)

  • Brad Wilson
    (Rep)

Biographical Information

Utah continues to be one of only 11 states with no limit on the amount of money an individual can contribute to a political campaign, and one of only 5 states with no limits on what a corporation can contribute. Do you favor any limits on donations to political campaigns? Why or why not?

What is the legislature’s role in addressing the homeless problem and assuring affordable housing for the working poor?

Not all school districts are able to provide the same resources for their students. How should we support school districts with lesser ability (primarily because of lower property values) to raise revenue?

The Utah State Constitution reads, in part, "Both male and female citizens of this State shall enjoy equally all civil, political and religious rights and privileges." The Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads, “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” Should Utah ratify the ERA which expresses the same view as the Utah Constitution? Explain your position.

Campaign Mailing Address 1211 Bridge Park Way
Layton, UT 84041
Campaign Email Address team@ammongruwell.com
Campaign Phone (385) 424-1243
Twitter @AGruwell
Current Employment Electrical Engineer for L3Harris Technologies
Education B.S. in Computer Engineering from BYU, M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from BYU
Campaign Website https://ammongruwell.com/
Yes, I favor donation limits for state and local races. This is especially true regarding corporate donations. When a legislator receives money from the same corporations and industries that he/she is tasked with regulating, how can we expect them to remain unbiased? This is true at all levels of government, but even more so at the state and local levels where campaigns have much lower budgets. For example, a successful campaign for the Utah House of Representatives may only cost around $10,000. This amount of money is a drop in the bucket for many large corporations, and if it results in more favorable laws regarding taxes or regulation it could translate into millions of dollars in return. It’s no wonder state and national corporations so frequently donate thousands of dollars to state legislators. If we don’t allow athletes to pay off referees, or criminals to bribe judges, why do we allow corporations to fund the campaigns of those who are tasked with regulating them?
In 2016 I helped run an organization that reached out to the homeless population in Utah county and provided some basic necessities. This gave me the chance to really listen to them and hear their stories. Many of them have serious physical or mental health issues that continue to go untreated. Many are estranged from their families and have nowhere else to go but the streets. Some were fleeing domestic abuse. Most simply couldn’t afford housing. The stories varied widely, but I often felt like our roles might have been switched if our life circumstances had been reversed. I believe the Legislature should play a larger role in providing basic necessities to Utah’s homeless population such as increased shelter capacity, preventative healthcare, and other social services. To address the larger issue of housing affordability, the legislature needs to invest in the infrastructure necessary to support higher density housing without harming the communities where it will be built.
Inequality between schools is a major issue in Utah, and yet recent actions by the legislature have attempted to exacerbate the problem. In 2019 the Utah Legislature passed a huge tax reform bill that significantly cut income taxes. Since income taxes are constitutionally allocated to the education fund, this bill was essentially a large cut in education funding. Proponents of the bill said that this gap in education funding could be made up by increasing revenue from property taxes. The problem with this approach is that already-struggling schools in areas with lower property values would be even more disadvantaged. Shifting the burden of education funding more to the state level would ensure that the communities that need the most help can get it.
Yes, I support the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. I believe that all people should be treated equally under the law. Opponents of the amendment harbor unreasonable fears regarding its legal consequences. The fact that the same language already exists in the Utah constitution reveals these fears to be unfounded. Traditional gender roles can be voluntarily maintained by individuals without them needing to be codified in law.
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