By JOE JAYNES
Thanks to encouragement from so many of you, my family and I are strongly considering running for State Representative from District 70 which represents McKinney and most of northern Collin County.
I cannot make an official announcement at this time because throughout Texas, county office holders are restricted on formally announcing for a state position until Dec. 2, depending on the passage of Proposition 10 in the upcoming Nov. 8 constitutional amendment elections. (Complicated, isn’t it?)
However, in the meantime, I am looking for your thoughts and input.
This position has had excellent representation from Ken Paxton. It would be my goal to carry on the conservative principles that Ken has established through his leadership.
My own record as county commissioner reflects these conservative values. For example:
* I have never voted for a tax increase;
* I authored the 5% county homestead exemption;
* Collin County was one of the first counties in the state to receive a AAA bond rating;
* We have approximately $2 billion worth of transportation projects underway;
* The commissioners’ court placed our employees on a pay for performance system as opposed to the traditional step system that most government entities have in place;
* I led the effort in freezing taxes for senior citizens;
* We cut the county property tax to one of the lowest in the state.
Unfortunately the state of Texas is not as well off. For the upcoming legislative session in 2013, Texas could be facing another deficit. It is during these trying times that Collin County needs a state representative with the necessary experience to make the hard decisions necessary to keep this state great.
My pledge to you would be to approach the difficult issues with three core beliefs that I hear every day from constituents which are:
* People want less government intrusion in their lives
* Counties, cities and school districts should have more local control
* No new taxes
I would also make as my platform the following issues which I believe are so important to the future of Collin County:
No new toll roads – Collin County does not need to be one big gated community;
Water – in this fast growing area it is essential that we develop long-term water resources;
Local control for our school systems – If Austin is going to cut funding for schools, they should cut unnecessary regulations as well;
Unfunded mandates – There should be a constitutional amendment prohibiting unfunded mandates for cities, school districts and counties;
End diversions — Almost half of gas tax revenues meant for roads are diverted to other areas of the state budget.
I plan on using the time between now and Dec. 2 to listen to you in order to find out what you want to see in your next state representative. Please send me your thoughts and ideas on these issues and others.
As always, it is a pleasure serving you.