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State Rep. races: Merrimack County District 11 (Concord Ward 1)

  • Joe Alexander Jr.

  • Beth Richards


Concord Ward 1 (one seat)
Wednesday, November 02, 2016
Merrimack County District 11

Democratic incumbent Steve Shurtleff faces Republican Kevin James Miller.

Steve Shurtleff

Party: Democrat

Age: 69

Town of residence: Penacook

Occupation: Retired, U.S. Marshal Service

Incumbent? If so, how many terms: In my 6th term

Do you support commuter rail funding? Yes. When the expansion of I-93 is completed between Salem and Manchester the I-93 corridor can't be expanded again because of the impact of road salt runoff on the watershed. To meet future transportation needs, we need to look at the viability of rail. This biennium the N.H. House unfortunately voted against a federal grant to study passenger rail service in N.H. We should bring passenger rail to Nashua and if future transportation needs justify it, bring it to Manchester and Concord.

Do you support providing more state money for higher education? Yes. N.H. is 49th in the amount of state funding for post secondary public education. There is something wrong when it's less expensive for a N.H. student to attend York County Community College in Maine then to go to Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth. Fifty percent of our N.H. students leave to attend college out of state and many don't return N.H. I'm disappointed with some of the university's spending decisions and this needs to be addressed.

Do you support pro-gun legislation, such as constitutional carry? No. As a gun owner, I support the closing of the gun show and online gun sales loophole. There is nothing in our N.H. or federal constitution that protects the right of anyone to carry a concealed weapon. Approximately 95 percent of all applications to carry a concealed weapon are granted. But there are a few exceptions, i.e. individuals suffering from mental health issues or problems with alcohol. For safety reasons they should not be carrying a concealed weapon.

Do you support reauthorizing Medicaid expansion? Yes. The N.H. Health plan is working in N.H., and without the use of state funds. Now 50,000 N.H. citizens are receiving health care, some for the first time. There is a secondary benefit that we all share in. Because of Medicare Expansion there has been a 20 percent drop emergency room use. This results in a drop in health care costs for all of us.

Do you support increasing the minimum wage? Yes. N.H.'s minimum wage is tied to the federal rate, which is currently set at $7.25 an hour. The last rate increase was in 2009, and N.H. currently has the lowest minimum wage rate in New England. I would like to see N.H. re-institute its own minimum wage and bring it to $9/hour. We still would be .60 cents an hour less than Maine and Vermont.

Do you support marijuana legalization or decriminalization? I support marijuana decriminalization. With the penalties for possession of marijuana for personal use being a violation, the same as a traffic ticket.

What would you like voters to know about your philosophy, principles or priorities? We must continue our efforts to end the opioid crisis. We also need to do more for those suffering from mental illness. I've tried to work hard for the people of Penacook while serving in the N.H. House. I am proud to have worked in a bi-partisan manner with Republican friends for the good of N.H. In the next House session I would like to see this spirit of bipartisanship continued and not have us go back to the polarization that we've seen in previous House sessions.

Kevin James Miller

Party: Republican

Age: 35

Town of Residence: Penacook

Occupation: Veteran

Incumbent? If so, how many terms: -

Do you support commuter rail funding?: I do believe that if there are more options for transportation for the residents then more residents will be able to travel to get jobs.

Do you support providing more state money for higher education?: Yes

Do you support pro-gun legislation, such as constitutional carry?: Yes. I support Constitutional Carry

Do you support reauthorizing Medicaid expansion?: I don't believe that anyone should be without health care benefits but I don't like the current Obamacare Law.

Do you support increasing the minimum wage?: No

Do you support marijuana legalization or decriminalization?: Yes

What would you like voters to know about your philosophy, principles or priorities?: I am for the people and will support what the people want. Politicians have forgotten that they are supposed to be working for the people. I will work for the people.