What’s your occupational or professional background?
About eight years in manufacturing, three years in managed healthcare, one year of consulting and adult education, and 11 years in banking and finance.
What is your Education?
I earned my MBA with an emphasis in Taxation at Xavier University and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Northern Kentucky University.
Any other credentials?
I am a Certified Treasury Professional (CTP) and a Licensed School District Treasurer.
What is your philosophy on government?
State government can’t be all things to all people. The state must create the economic environment for people and business to achieve success. We need to provide for basic services such as public safety, infrastructure, and education. We need to encourage and enable charitable organizations to do more so that government can do less. This proposal is meant to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of social programs that many rely on.
What about taxes?
All taxes are destructive and some are a necessary evil. In my judgment, the income tax has the greatest repressive impact on Ohio’s economy. The tax code can be restructured to encourage virtue rather than punishing success. Let’s start by abolishing the Ohio marriage penalty. Allow income tax credits for charitable organizations that operate in Ohio. For example, on the federal level, (501c3) donations are tax deductible (Schedule A). I want those same donations that are specific to Ohio to be allowed as a tax credit against state income taxes. And why not give unwed mothers an incentive to place unwanted infants up for adoption? That would discourage abortion, reduce the number of single parent homes, and be a blessing to many parents seeking to adopt. That would be a win-win for everybody involved.
What about health care?
Government should concentrate on lowering costs. Here’s an idea: Have one central location in every city for indigents to get whatever care they need. All of the personnel would have immunity from malpractice litigation. The staff would be mostly volunteers, interns, and students. Regardless of location, any provider performing indigent care (charity) would get immunity from malpractice litigation. This would be a win-win. Everybody would continue to get the care that they need. And hospital emergency rooms would no longer provide non-emergency treatment to non-paying customers.
What about tax fairness?
People should pay for what they use. In theory, gasoline taxes are paid by motorists and used for highway construction and maintenance. Is it fair that boaters should pay highway taxes? Many states allow tax refunds for gasoline and diesel fuel used in watercraft. I’d like to add Ohio to that list.
What would you do about education funding?
As a licensed school district treasurer, I have specialized knowledge of many of the problems and concerns faced by the public schools. Local schools spend far too much time, money, and resources fighting for the renewal of expiring tax levies and promoting new levies just to cover their inflation expenses. This is ridiculous and needs to be changed. More of their funding should come from the state and less from local sources. As a home school dad (My wife does all the work.), I also understand the concerns of those who do not utilize the public schools. The state should pay 100 percent of the cost of state mandates. The local communities can choose to fund any additional programs or activities.
What about charter schools?
Competition is good. Both charter and district schools should be held to high standards.
What’s in it for the parents of private school children?
Allow (with no additional strings attached) tuition and curriculum expense tax credits for parents with children in non-public schools to offset, some or all, of those expenses. This would apply to private, parochial, and home school parents.
How does it make sense to allow new tax credits?
The credits would be phased in. As the income tax becomes less burdensome, Ohio will become a more attractive state for more businesses and workers. New economic activity will create jobs, increase property values, and create new revenues without increasing other tax rates.
What about school levies?
If the state pays 100 percent of mandates, state spending will increase or school expenses will decrease. I prefer dropping mandates. Therefore, the school’s need for levies will be reduced.
What’s in it for the elderly?
Fewer and smaller school levies will reduce their property tax burden. Also, it is likely that their charitable donation credits and healthcare expense credits will reduce or eliminate their income tax burden.
Are you pro-business?
Yes and Cincinnati philanthropist and financier, Carl Lindner, has endorsed me in the past. I am very strongly pro-business and want Ohio to be more welcoming to business. Repressive regulations and bloated bureaucracies that encourage businesses to leave Ohio or not come here at all must be changed. This helps workers by creating jobs. It’s a win-win. Furthermore, my wife (retired teacher) and I are both former union members. Labor cannot succeed unless an environment is created for business to thrive.
What about energy?
There has been much talk about conservation and alternative sources of energy. This is good but not nearly enough. Ohio has oil and natural gas reserves. The state must encourage the production of our natural resources. Increasing production creates jobs and reduces energy costs as supplies increase. Additionally, this increase in economic activity and royalties will increase revenues for the state. New revenues allow for a reduction of the tax burden for residents and businesses. This is a win-win for government, business, labor, consumers, and taxpayers.
What spending cuts would you make?
As I said earlier, government can’t be all things to all people. Anything that is not related to the primary purpose of state government will be closely examined. Ohio is bloated with hundreds of cabinet agencies, regulatory boards, and commissions. There is a lot of opportunity for streamlining and consolidating.
How can I help?
I’m not asking for endorsements or commitments from any individuals at this time. But I am asking for the following:
- Prayer – As a committed Christian, prayer is very important to me.
- Suggestions – I need advice and counsel for formulating a platform, proposals, and areas of government that I should be studying. If you think that any of the above ideas that I outlined should be changed, modified, or clarified, please contact me to discuss.
- Send Money to Friends of Becker, 925 Locust Ln., Cincinnati, OH 45245-1313
- Forward this page to your own network and ask them to support my candidacy. Please keep in mind that checks must be written by December 31st to get the tax credit.