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Idaho State House District 17 B

Idaho House of Representatives members serve a 2-year term and are responsible for translating the public will into public policy for the state, levying taxes, appropriating public funds, and overseeing the administration of state agencies. These responsibilities are carried out through the legislative process — laws passed by elected representatives of the people, legislators.

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  • Candidate picture

    Sue Chew

  • Candidate picture

    Mary Ellen Nourse

Biographical Information

1. What do you hope to accomplish if elected?

2. What experience has prepared you for this office?

3. What do you see as the most significant challenges Idaho faces that you might be able to address in this position?

4. Is there anything else you wish to tell the voters?

Campaign Phone 208-606-0872
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Twitter SueChewForIdaho
Campaign Website
Campaign Twitter SueChewForIdaho
Solid work on behalf of all my constituents and for the future of Idaho. Especially important are these 4 areas: 1. Housing- that is affordable for homeowners and renters alike 2. Education- from preschool to graduation into good paying jobs 3. Healthcare- improved so it is available for all, and including care for mental health and substance use disorders 4. Idaho quality of life, including water, open space and rights of privacy and freedom from government overreach.
Being the eldest in a working family, I learned early how to get a job done. While sometimes that meant having to swivel on a dime to get the job done, it always meant getting my young charges there too, safe and sound no matter what. That, coupled with the deeper training I got as I got older, as a pharmacist, I know I really think about everybody now, as a matter of practice, when I read legislation, contemplate my own policymaking practices and think with each, how to avoid unintended side effects. That is why so much of my work is in my community, getting input, getting clarity, improving and building on things, getting people from the community a place at the decision-making table.
Before us, are all the things that comes with growth and the 21st century world which we find ourselves in...While our legislative body contemplates what prudent action looks like, on things ranging from roads, bridges, deferred maintenance, public lands, fire suppression, agriculture, natural resources including water management as well as school funding, teacher shortages, to now new heights of development bordering on sprawl, new workforce housing and services, I am concerned about extremism that throws prudence aside and ignores the will of the voters. I will keep my eye on what matters to us all and for responsible government, built on collaboration, well reasoned policies and the commitment to preserve our quality of life in Idaho.
My campaign is unique in that it is run entirely by 14-18 year olds. This is because they are engaged and capable. Because they want to change the world, the most important thing is I made sure they all had the opportunity to listen to people at the doors all over my district and to really understand the world beyond their own families and their own lives. I make it a point to show by example, to listen and learn from everybody, especially those with views 180 degrees different than their own. I find through the years, the focus of students seems more to be on issues and solutions not about partisanship, so I hope when you get a chance to meet them, as they join me at the doors, you will share your ideas and thoughts with them.
Campaign Phone 208-251-1151
Campaign Website
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As a new representative, I’d provide a new face, a new energy, and a strong, new voice for District 17. Along with other legislators, I’d work to advance bills to protect Idaho's most vulnerable: moms in crisis pregnancies and their unborn, our youth, and our elderly. I’d also strongly support the issues identified under Question 3. Collaboration is a key skill to achieving results , and I’ve set the goal of working with colleagues on both sides of the aisle and avoiding partisanship. Communication and confidence are key abilities, also, and I’d definitely speak up for District 17.
Based on my 21 years working in Corrections/Prisons here in Idaho and 35+ years’ fulltime experience in Education, I’d bring a practical, from-the-trenches approach to Idaho issues. I’ve experienced firsthand the challenges that the Idaho Department of Correction faces in rehabilitating Idaho offenders. Due to my years in Education—which include service at the high school, community college, university, and graduate levels—I’ve seen many of the issues faced in public and private schools. My husband Jim and I live daily the challenges that Idahoans face at the pump, the doctor’s office, the supermarket, and at tax time.
1. Protection of Idaho's mothers and their unborn babies that includes a strong support system. 2. Safeguards for the lives of Idaho's elderly. Three surrounding states have legalized euthanasia under the term "Death With Dignity." 3. Protection of vulnerable teens from mutilation and other gender “therapies” that are often irreversible and which the young person may regret in adulthood. 5. Education here in Idaho that supports Career & Technical Education for the workforce, as well as parental involvement in their children’s education. 4. Long-term tax relief that considers Idaho’s one-time Impact Fee and budgets that continue to increase.
Jim and I are Catholic Christians and active in our parish. Due to working in Idaho prisons, I strongly support law enforcement and our military. Jim’s a Vietnam veteran, and I served in the volunteer Texas State Guard. I hold an Idaho teaching certificate and an Idaho Vocational Administrator credential. In 1990, I earned the Doctor of Education degree from the University of Memphis. Empathy, listening, and public speaking are skills I’ve taught throughout my years in Education. I’d welcome the opportunity to use these skills as an energetic, enthusiastic voice for District 17 in the 2022 Idaho Legislature.