Clark Miles, Constitution Party
October 23, 2008
1. The two entryways into Park City, S.R. 224 and S.R. 248, are state-managed highways under stress from traffic increases, with backups along S.R. 248 being especially worrisome to officials in Park City and Summit County and commuters. Please talk about your preferred solutions to the two entryways, with particular attention to measures that could reduce congestion on S.R. 248.
I’m neither a traffic engineer nor a long-term social planner, but I do think the State serves the people best by building adequate infrastructure such as roads. This function of government goes back to the beginning of our country, with Constitutional provisions for mail roads, and later canal routes for efficient trade. I fully support the recommendations of the UDOT engineers and traffic/safety analysts with perhaps some good community inputs. The routes from Park City to the major Wasatch Front centers could be profitable mass transit developments. With so many people going so far on the same routes, and with all of the recreation attractions on these routes, it could be both profitable and beneficial to the quality of life for the region.
2. Utah has attracted significant numbers of immigrants in the last decade, with many coming to the state from Mexico. Please discuss what public benefits they should receive, including your opinion about whether immigrants should be eligible for tuition breaks that other Utahns receive at state-run colleges and universities and driver permits.
The solution is to make employers of illegal worker pay the price of all the national and state costs these people incur, and to lay significant fines on these employers who evade regulation as well. Give the employers a 30-day grace period to prove the legal residence of their workers on a one-time basis, then enforce the law. Allow the employer to choose to sponsor an illegal who wants to stay here, and go on a citizenship-track program. Such a sponsor would voluntarily pay for the direct expenses of his employees and their dependents on the state and Federal programs of all kinds, and this would entitle their sponsored immigrants to receive in-state tuition. Fines for evasion of these duties would not be levied on voluntary sponsors who pay these costs.
3. The economy of Park City and surrounding Summit County relies heavily on tourism, with winter being especially lucrative and summer becoming busier. Please discuss the Statehouse’s role in boosting tourism to Utah, and whether state funding for tourism is at an appropriate level. Do you propose any new tourism programs?
I would not tax tourism, and I would not promote tourism. What I would do is build good infrastructure such as roads, and I would seek to return the land from the Federal government to State and County and City governments, where I think the responsibility for care of the environment should rest.
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4. Legislators after Census 2010 will redraw district boundaries for the state House and Senate and the U.S. House. In the previous round of redistricting, after Census 2000, Summit County was split between two state House districts. Please discuss the ideal redistricting scenario for Summit County, including whether you see keeping the county within one district as important.
The issue of Gerrymandering by the major political parties is my biggest local issue. I would introduce legislation to conform the voter districts first to contiguous inhabited areas, second to county lines, and third to regional lines with common financial and social interests. What has happen, instead of this, is that politicians in office have agreed, across party lines, to create "safe" seats for themselves, and drawing the voting districts to conform to the interests of the incumbents. This is reprehensible, and reason in itself to turn these incumbents all out of office.
5. Voters defeated an effort to introduce school vouchers to Utah, which would provide taxpayer-funded assistance to parents with children enrolled in private schools. Please discuss the theory of school vouchers — their promise and their problems. Would you support a renewed effort to provide school vouchers?
The School Voucher legislation was the wrong way to do it. The right way to do it is to pay all schools, including home schools the exact same fee on a performance basis. I object to State-run education, and insist that the State has no proper involvement in setting curricula or values for the community. The establishment of State-controlled schools has all the evils of State-controlled religions, and should be ended flat. A better State School Board would issue tests on reading, writing, computer skills, math and science. Schools or parents could annually take their pupil in for the standard test, and if they pass, they get paid a flat rate, from the state property tax revenues. The days of brick schools should be replaced by internet services or private centers operated according to the parents’ directions, not the State’s.
6. State liquor laws have long pitted the hospitality industry against Utah legislators, who tightly regulate what establishments may serve liquor. Please discuss the successes or faults of the liquor laws, including your opinion of club-membership requirements. Are there any changes you propose to the liquor laws?
I would take the State out of the liquor business, and devolve that decision to the counties via zoning regulations and local ordinances regarding sales to minors and rules for local establishments.