The Idaho Statesman seems to be having difficulty posting my responses so here they are (from their confirmation email)
Receipt of Responses
Dear Curtis Ellis,
Thank you for replying to our 2011 voter guide questionnaire. We appreciate your cooperation. Here is a copy of your submission:
Political: Ada County Republican Precinct Committeeman, 2010. Personal: As a realtor specializing in short sales, I am an advocate and strong negotiator for individuals, especially those who find themselves in financial trouble. As a property manager, I balance the owner’s need for a good return on their investment with the renter’s need for a safe and affordable housing. As an employer, I work with employees & contractors to build, maintain, and rehab properties, and with various government agencies to ensure proper and accurate accounting and permitting.
Education: Long Beach City College, Liberal Arts, 1987; University of Nevada, Reno, Biology 1990
Web Site: www.Ellis4Idhao.com
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/Ellis4Idaho
Twitter Page: twitter.com/CurtisEllisID
Q. How will you vote on the Students Come First referenda? Why?
A. I will vote to approve all three referendums. Our current education system is antiquated, is not serving the best interests of our students, and needs to be revamped. Simply increasing the budget is not the answer. We need increased technology, increased opportunity, increased competition, and a system that puts Idaho’s parents and students, not the teacher’s union, in charge of educational choices.
Q. Taxpayers across Idaho have been asked to raise property taxes to make up for lower state support of K-12 schools. How do you intend to deal with state education budget issues? Be specific.
A. We need to grow Idaho’s economy to increase the tax base, not continue to increase tax and levy rates. We need to support the Students Come First initiatives. Just replacing traditional textbooks with e-textbooks will save millions per year! Encouraging more non-traditional education – private, virtual, and charter schools - will also free up dollars as all cost less than traditional K-12 schooling. We also need to transfer lands currently managed by the federal government to the State Land Board allowing us to utilize and benefit from our own resources.
Q. Do you support ethics reform and, if so, what changes would you make? For legislators? For state officials?
A. I do not believe that reform is necessary at this time, if the legislators and state officials properly address ethics lapses when they occur. The system worked with Senator Pierce and a bi-partisan panel found no wrong doing. The system was, in my opinion, sloppy in addressing Senator Magee’s drunk driving arrest, but not in dealing with his sexual harassment allegations. The voters will always have the final say.
Q. Do you support legislation requiring women seeking abortions to get an ultrasound? Why?
A. Yes. 99% of women who request an abortion are currently given an ultrasound – it insures the health of the mother. Giving a woman the option to view the ultrasound before consenting to an abortion insures that she fully understands the decision she is about to make.
Q. What did the Legislature get right this year? What did it get wrong?
A. They did a great job by balancing the budget, reducing taxes, and putting money into back into savings.I would have preferred that more of the surplus go toward savings and tax relief.
Q. What should voters know about you as a person?
A. I have been a born again Christian (non-denominational) for just over 20 years. My wife & I will celebrate our 23rd anniversary in May. We have 2 college-aged children - our daughter is a senior at George Washington University in Washington, DC, and our son is a freshman at College of Western Idaho. I enjoy running and biking, especially in the Boise Foothills. I do volunteer counseling, helping men overcome mistakes they have made in their lives & reconciling their marriages.
Q. Why are you running for office?
A. Almost two years ago; I put a bumper sticker on my car that read,”Silence is Consent”. Every time I saw it, I was reminded of when I didn’t stand up for what I knew was right – morally, socially, and politically. I came to the conclusion that I could not just remain silent, but had to take a stand against the gradual decline that we are experiencing - in our Communities, our State, and our Nation. For years now I have been helping people on an individual level. When redistricting created an empty seat in district 15, I had no choice but to step up and run, allowing me to serve Idahoans in a greater capacity.
Q. Give an example of how you worked successfully — personally or professionally — alongside someone with different political viewpoints from your own. What about this experience surprised you?
A. Every day I work with and/or represent people with different personal, political, and religious viewpoints. We all have a job to do and, being mature, professional people, we do that job. I don’t understand why this would be surprising.
(Note: I added the Q’s and A’s to make it more readable)
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