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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Texas House, District 47

Primary Election: March 6, 2018Early Voting: February 20 - March 2, 2018
  • Patty Vredevelt (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Jay Wiley (Rep) Small Business Owner

  • Candidate picture

    Paul D. Workman (Rep) Consultant

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Biographical Information

What processes do you support to improve elections and voting in Texas?

Identify three measures you would support that reduce gun violence.

After publication of the 2020 census, new congressional, state and education districts will be redrawn. What process do you support to ensure fair representation?

What would you do to provide and fund an equitable, quality public education for all children pre-K through grade 12?

What are your legislative priorities for the Texas environment? Discuss water management, renewable energy, and clean air.

What would you do to ensure healthcare for all Texans?

What other issue do you consider most important and how would you address it?

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Background Conservative Christian, husband, father of 2 boys, local business owner. Homeowner in Four Points. 13 yr Travis Co. resident. Member, Riverbend Church
Education B.S., The Citadel military college J.D., St. Mary's School of Law
1. Simplify ballot language and add economic impact numbers on bond questions so taxpayers fully understand what is being proposed.

2. Move bond elections to even numbered general election years to maximize voter participation.

3. Close primaries to reduce cross party voting.
The most dangerous place one can be is a "gun free zone" because criminals do not obey gun laws. Law abiding citizens pay the price. Studies all show more arms in the hands of good guys means less gun violence.

1. Constitutional Carry

2. Open Carry

3. Eliminate "Gun Free Zones" in public spaces
More transparency by the Legislature to ensure communities of interest are grouped together in districts. It is also the responsibility of every citizen to watch closely and stay informed so politicians don't play games with district lines. I will fight to make sure downtown Austin Democrats don't unfairly influence the process and that suburban and rural voices are heard loudly and often.
1. End Robin Hood. It's unfair and doesn't work.

2. Accountability for the bureaucracies that surround public education.

3. Prioritize the classroom. More dollars to classrooms, not bureaucracies. Incentivize the good teachers and fast track the bad ones out the door.
The high cost of energy in Travis County is a direct result of Austin Energy being owned and run by the Austin City Council. If rate payers had more choice they would pay an estimated $200 million less per year than they do now. Renewable "green" energy is a lovely goal, but it isn't financially feasible yet and my first concern is for taxpayers and rate payers. We need a dramatic new direction and new leadership. We cannot keep doing the same thing year after year. Less talk, more action.
Get government out of the business of healthcare. When government involves itself in healthcare (or anything for that matter), costs rise, bureaucracies flourish, and consumer choices are reduced. Spending on bureaucracy happens first, then patient care gets whatever is left over.

A system based on the free market would reconnect the patient and doctor. Providers, hospitals, and drug companies would have to compete with each other, reducing prices. Our business, Luxe OB, is a concierge medical practice that provides a patient-centered model of care free of the insurance bureacracy.
Property taxes are at crisis level in Travis County but politicians keep kicking the can down the road. Property tax relief failed in the TX House last session and it is unconscionable that Paul Workman voted against it. (SB 1, Vote #164, Aug 14, 2017)

We need courage to stand up to the lobbyists and downtown Austinites who have an interest in keeping property taxes so high. I won't stop until we fundamentally change our property tax system and reduce the unfair burden it places on homeowners, including lowering the fixed rate for seniors.

That is my #1 priority.
Background I am a 40-year construction professional, owning my own company for most of that time, creating hundreds of jobs in Central Texas.
Education B.S. in Building Construction, Texas A&M University, 1973
The right to vote, and the responsibility brought with it, is sacrosanct in American civic life. It is paramount to take reasonable care to ensure the integrity of our elections. For example, in Texas voters are required to present photo ID in order to vote in person. If a person does not have a valid, government-issued ID, they can obtain a free Election Identification Certificate in order to vote. I voted in favor of Texas’s common-sense voter ID law because it is an important tool in combatting voter fraud. Additionally, I supported Texas’s law to outlaw fraudulent vote harvesting.
As an ardent supporter of the Second Amendment, I do not support any measure that would infringe upon the right of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms. I do, however, support increased access to mental health services. All too often we find out after the fact that a perpetrator of gun violence has a history of mental illness but did not have access to the right kind of care.
In Texas, the state legislature is responsible for drawing congressional, legislative, and State Board of Education districts. I support Texas’s long-observed, constitutional practice of entrusting the responsibility of reapportionment to the duly elected members of the Texas Legislature.
The Texas Constitution requires the legislature develop a system of public schools for the state’s schoolchildren, a mission I wholeheartedly support. Unfortunately, the state’s current “Robin Hood” school finance system has not worked out. Taxpayers in Austin ISD, for example, are on the hook for more than a half-billion dollars in “recapture” money that does not stay in Austin’s local schools. Any proposals to overhaul the state’s school finance system must take serious steps towards ending Robin Hood altogether.
The procurement of a reliable supply of safe, clean drinking water for all Texans today and for generations to come has always been a top legislative priority of mine. As a member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, I have been heavily involved in the process of responsibly developing Texas’s water supply and the protection of our region’s Highland Lakes. When the next drought comes, Texas should be prepared.
I support federal Medicaid block grants to the states that would allow Texas to develop a program that meets our state’s needs. The last thing our already complicated healthcare system needs is more top-down, one-size-fits-all mandates from Washington.
In recent years, Texans have encountered a growing number of municipalities infringing upon their personal freedoms, particularly as it relates to business and private property rights. For example, the City of Austin has mandated to businesses that they may not run a criminal background check on a prospective employee until after they have already offered the job. It is simply not the place of local governments to interfere in matters of private enterprise. I will continue to vigorously defend my constituents’ rights when they are trampled upon by the central planners at city hall.