The role of government in creating jobs is one of the main differences between Rep. Hans Dunshee and challenger Mark Harmsworth.
Dunshee said he believes the government can pass legislation to help people get to work.
“The government can create a foundation for private jobs,” he said.
He wants to invest in fisheries along the Skagit River to increase fish production. This way, it helps the restaurants, fishing companies and the outdoor recreation industry, he said.
Harmsworth, a Mill Creek councilman, believes the jobs will come from small businesses, and the government should remove unnecessary regulations that affects them.
“I believe the government should be there to help them and not get in the way,” Harmsworth said.
Harmsworth said reform of the insurance system would bring more insurance providers to the state. Competition among companies would lower health care costs, he said. He also wants to reform the business and occupation tax so businesses pay less in taxes.
Voters on Nov. 6 will decide who will represent the 44th Legislative District. Dunshee, who has been a legislator for the past 18 years, won the primary with 52 percent of the vote. Harmsworth advanced after getting 30 percent of the vote. Candidates B.J. Guillot and Robert McCaughan also ran for the seat.
Dunshee aims to bring a Washington State University branch to Everett. This way, a new generation of Boeing engineers can be trained, he said.
Dunshee aims to improve the economy so revenue can increase. This way, more programs can be funded, including education.
Harmsworth said there is enough revenue already, but it is not managed appropriately. He said education and public safety must be funded first before any other program.
Both agree on legalizing marijuana for medical purposes, but Harmsworth opposes Initiative 502 because he is against the recreational use of marijuana.
They have different opinions on the other state initiatives.
Harmsworth favors charter schools. He also favors Tim Eyman’s initiative that requires a two-thirds majority of the Legislature to increase or add new state taxes. He is against gay marriage.
Dunshee opposes Eyman’s initiative and is worried that by approving charter schools, less money would go to fund public schools. He is in favor of gay marriage.
Alejandro Dominguez: 425-339-3422; adominguez@ heraldnet.com.
What’s the job?
The job is a two-year term as a state representative in the 44th Legislative District Position 1. The area covers the cities of Lake Stevens, Mill Creek, Snohomish and parts of Everett and Marysville. The annual salary is $42,106.
Experience: He has served as a state representative for the past 18 years and is chairman of the House Capital Budget Committee.
Residence: Mill Creek
Experience: He was first elected in 2007 to Mill Creek City Council, Position 5. He works as a principal service engineer for Microsoft Corp.