A Democratic candidate for the District 1 seat in the Kansas Senate believes he can bring a change in focus to the job if elected in 2020.
“We need to focus on making sure that my kids and your kids, if they want to live in a small town in Kansas anywhere from west to east, that they have the opportunity,” said Hoyt City Councilman Dustin Brinkman. “Good schools, healthcare opportunities and most importantly, economic opportunities to be able to have a really solid job, be able to get to work on a safe road and then have the infrastructure to back that.”
A priority for anyone serving Kansas Senate District 1 is the fate of Highway 75, particularly from Holton to the Kansas-Nebraska state line.
“For so long, we’ve just continued to sweep dollars out of KDOT for failed tax policies and the ability to move money around within the state,” said Brinkman. “We have to protect that, because it protects our citizens and it also allows our businesses to then succeed, because they’re not paying for maintenance on their equipment, they’re not paying for maintenance on trucks. We can get goods and services through the state much more efficiently. We have to do something about 75.”
School funding has also been a perpetual legislative issue.
“I look at education as a business opportunity for us,” said Brinkman. “It’s a simple ROI. It’s the best ROI we have of the state dollar. If we can educate our citizens and keep them here, they’re higher salary earners, they promote more taxation into the system, they’re able to buy more things. It’s good for Kansas. When we look at the Gannon decision, I think we really need to focus on that we satisfy the court’s needs and add the inflationary rate and then evaluate as we move forward.”
Brinkman would like to see schools get budget certainty so they can know who they’re able to pay and how much from year to year.