Q&A: 29th Representative District candidates address issues

William Bush

Name: William Bush
Party: Democrat
Office seeking: 29th District State Representative
Age: 50
Occupation: Attorney
Family: Married to Carrie and we have three sons: Liam (16), Mason (14) and Jonathan (11)
Elective experience: Caesar Rodney School Board

Name: Robin R. Hayes
Party: Republican
Office seeking: 29th Representative District
Age: 52
Occupation: Dietician/diabetes educator, owner of Nutritionally Speaking
Family: Married with two adult sons, one granddaughter and two grandsons
Elective experience: First time running for a political office

Why are you running for this office?

WB: I am running for this office because I truly want to help the constituents of the 29th district and make their lives better.

RH: Did not answer.

What would be your top priority if elected?

WB: Bringing high-paying jobs to Kent County.

RH: Regulations promulgated by state agencies often carry as much weight and consequence as state law. But the state agencies responsible for crafting these rules have little accountability to the public. Unlike other states, Delaware has no legislative oversight of the regulatory process. This needs to change. Farmers, small-business people and other Delawareans need a bigger voice in a process that impacts countless aspects of their lives.

State laws and policies need to be created that will foster a marketplace where Delawareans have more options for health care insurance and greater access to health care practitioners.

If you could change one state policy or law, what would it be?

WB: Reducing the amount of state testing that is mandated on our children. The current state testing takes a long period of time to complete and does not give a clear picture of how to help a child during the current school year. State testing creates stress and anxiety for our children and detracts from time that could be better spent educating our children.

RH: Did not answer.

What are your plans to boost economic development?

WB: I believe that we need to do more to support small businesses and provide a more comprehensive strategy for attracting businesses to Delaware. The state needs to address workers’ compensation rates, eliminate burdensome and unneeded regulations, address electric rates, provide creative incentives for new companies and ensure we are providing education in our state to prepare our workforce for a 21st century economy.

RH: Did not answer.

What, if anything, should be done to increase revenue for the state or cut spending?

WB: Bringing new businesses and jobs to Delaware is essential for creating greater revenue for the state. A more focused economic development plan should be implemented. In regards to cutting spending, there are state agencies that should be reviewed to ensure that state resources are being used efficiently and effectively.

RH: Did not answer.

Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?

WB: I have concerns regarding the full legalization of marijuana. Any bill introduced must address the concerns of law enforcement, prohibit use in public places and protect our children from exposure to marijuana.

RH: Did not answer.

What, if any, gun laws would you change?

WB: I would not change any of Delaware’s gun laws.

RH: Did not answer.

Would you vote for legislation reinstating the death penalty? Why or why not?

WB: I would support the reinstatement of the death penalty if it was limited to the most egregious crimes, including the killing of a law enforcement or correctional officer. Any new law must address the problems with our previous law and protect against racial bias.

RH: Did not answer.

Do changes need to be made to the state’s employee health care structure? Why or why not?

WB: The state needs to provide more preventative care services for state employees. This will ultimately lead to a greater reduction in overall costs in our health care system.

RH: Did not answer.

What should be done to combat Delaware’s drug crisis?

WB: As an attorney, I have seen firsthand the damage caused by our drug crisis. The devastation caused by opioid addiction to individuals and families is immense. We must strengthen our laws against those who are selling heroin. We also must be responsive and find more ways to help with recovery for those addressing their drug addiction. There is a shortage of treatment facilities in Kent County that must be addressed.

RH: Did not answer.

Is there anything else you think is pertinent?

WB: I believe that my experience in community organizations and state government will assist me as a state representative. My experience serving on the board of the Modern Maturity Center, the Caesar Rodney School Board, the board of trustees for Delaware Technical Community College and the board of the Greater Dover Boys and Girls Club has given me real insight into the needs of the community. Additionally, my service as a policy adviser with the Department of Safety and Homeland Security, governor’s legal counsel, attorney for the House of Representatives and conflicts counsel in our court system has given me experience with state government that will allow me to be an effective legislator.

RH: My education and professional expertise have blessed me with many opportunities to positively influence public and business policies in our state. Additionally, as a dietician/diabetes educator, my training provided me with the tools and the skill sets to work one-on-one with people to empower them to lead healthier, happier lives. It is the second skill I think will be especially valuable as a state representative — working closely with constituents to address their concerns and solve their problems.

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