7B Candidates: Unemployment and LGA

Posted at: 10/12/2012 4:43 PM
Updated at: 10/12/2012 6:20 PM

Travis Silvers, Jay Fosle, and Erik Simonson all want to represent Duluth in the Minnesota legislature. They're vying for the 7B House spot.

Fosle, who's running as an independent and as a write-in candidate, is a city councilor and school district employee.

Simonson is the DFL endorsed candidate, and an assistant fire chief. His name will be on the ballot, after the DFL party petitioned the Minnesota Supreme Court.

And Silvers is the Republican running in the race. He said he's an independent contractor, whose wife runs a licensed day care.

When asked about addressing unemployment, both Fosle and Silvers focused a bit on mining.

Silvers said, "We go ahead and work with businesses. We need to tell PolyMet they're welcome here. And not send them the wrong message about regulations."

Fosle said he thinks there needs to be upgrades to infrastructure, because businesses won't want to invest and create jobs if they can't build on good infrastructure.

And Simonson said the focus needs to be on education as well, so we can invest in our workforce.

And when it comes to cuts to Local Government Aid, Simonson said we need to get more money flowing from St. Paul. "We need to have the discussion about where the monies need to be funneled."

Fosle said that Duluth has a spending problem, and we need to budget better to meet the dollars we have come to expect from state aid.

And Silvers asked the question, "Why are we spending so much money, if our local tax base cannot support it?"

Rep. Kerry Gauthier is not seeking re-election.

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