EDMOND — House District 83 includes a portion of southern Edmond. Incumbent Rep. Randy McDaniel faces Democrat Ed Holzberger. Following are McDaniel's responses to a candidate questionnairre from The Edmond Sun:
Name: Randy McDaniel
Political party: Republican
How to contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: What specific education reforms do you believe still need to be enacted?
I want the best education for our children. Over the last several years, the Legislature has passed many reforms intended to improve education in Oklahoma. These reforms need to be evaluated as all parties work together for the benefit of our children.
Aspects of the A-F School Grading System may need to be reformed. I believe in transparency and accountability. Superintendents across the state, however, have raised issues with the methodology used to grade the schools, and I think their concerns should be carefully considered. We need to make sure the grading system provides an accurate measurement of school performance.
The scholarship for students with disabilities offers special needs students unique educational opportunities. The scholarship may be used at accredited schools that can tailor individualized education programs for children with disabilities such as Down’s syndrome or autism. With more options to fulfill their educational needs, students with disabilities should see the quality of their education improve.
Q: What new programs or ideas would you bring to the Capitol to help create new jobs in the state?
I believe in the free enterprise system. Burdensome government regulations can stifle job growth and opportunity. Moreover, the rising costs associated with workers compensation, health care and taxes are also concerns of job creators. Addressing these issues will be priorities next year.
As chairman of the Economic Development, Tourism and Financial Services Committee, I authored legislation to mitigate unemployment benefits fraud. Abuse occurs when people continue getting unemployment benefits while working at a new job. Cracking down on fraud keeps unemployment taxes low, which saves employers money. During the 2013 session, I plan to build on the past reforms. An important issue will be a requirement that legislation designed to expand unemployment benefits contain a statement reflecting the projected impact on employer tax rates.
Sound fiscal policies have made a difference in Oklahoma during these difficult economic times. Yet, there is no substitute for the extraordinary perseverance of hardworking Oklahomans.