Fann, Karen

Republican – Legislative District 1 House

Phone: (928) 308-3995

Email: [email protected]


Address: 5691 Hole in One Dr, Prescott, AZ 86301

Age: 59. (09/25/54, St. Louis, MO).

Arizona since: 1958

Occupation: Small business owner, Arizona Highway Safety Specialists, Inc, since 1984.

Marital: Married

Education: Grossmont Jr. College, some classes/no degree; AZ Registrar of Contractors license; AZ Real Estate license (previously held for educational purposes).

Political experience: Mayor, Town of Chino Valley, 2002-09; Chino Valley councilman; Prescott City Councilman and Mayor Pro Temp, 1992-95; precinct committeeman.

Legis exp: House since 2011.

Interests: Reading, golf, Diamondbacks baseball, family time.

Two biggest issues: Arizona can do better with the way we fund and educate our children. There seems to be a disconnect between appropriate funding and expected outcomes. Competition among educational institutions increases positive outcomes but we need to create level playing fields both financially and with regulations. Arizona is falling far behind with keeping up with infrastructure needs. Not only are we not building new highways, we are not able to maintain our existing roads, bridges, etc. which move commerce and citizens throughout our state. If we are to maintain an economically sound state, this must be addressed immediately.

Budget priorities: Job creation, business opportunities and economic development have always been my priority. Arizona has serious financial needs including paying off our debt, funding education and infrastructure, CPS, public safety, etc. We have reduced spending so drastically over the past few years, there seems to be very few areas where we can even consider reducing. New or additional revenues can only be accomplished in a couple of areas. Job creation will put people back to work who will, in turn, pay income taxes, generate new sales tax revenues, and reduce the state’s burden of welfare assistance. Arizonans also need to start some serious discussions about how we will fund our infrastructure needs. Our state fuel sales tax is currently at 18 cents per gallon; 10 cents below the national average. We are also loosing revenues because of more fuel-efficient vehicles, which require less gallons, yet those vehicles utilize our highways equally.

Fiscal philosophy: First and foremost: a balanced budget. Unlike the feds, we cannot and should not spend more than we receive in revenues. This necessitates prioritizing our spending in all areas to keep our state strong, even in the tough times. Also, we cannot continue to only spend money on departments which continue to drain our limited financial resources. While important to our citizens overall wellbeing, continuing to drain our resources is creating budget deficits in the near future. We need to use some of our limited general fund monies to create new money thru economic growth and job creation. These opportunities are already at our doorstep. Surrounding states are strongly competing against us to entice neighboring states, Canada and Mexico to bring their business to them. We should not sit idle and let those opportunities pass us by.

Common Core: While I agree all educational institutions should be “on the same page” across the nation in at least minimum academic standards, I believe each state should be able to create and implement their own teaching programs to achieve those national standards. While it is great to embrace the concept of teaching outside of the box, some of the Common Core teaching methods are too far out of the box and are riddled with confusing teaching techniques. Our education system would be far better off if the federal government would reduce the unfunded mandates and allow our teachers to do their job in classrooms where they have control and respect of the students. We cannot expect our teachers to do their job without proper funding or the ability to control the demeanor of their classrooms.

Gifts to elected officials: Arizona already has some of the strictest laws in the nation regarding “gifts” to elected officials. The majority of our elected officials adhere to those laws and, unfortunately, a few do not. Those who don’t follow the rules should be held accountable for their actions. On another note, most of our citizens assume the position that legislators are well paid, which is not the case. Legislators earn $24K per year with a per diem and mileage added while we are in session. It is difficult for legislators to break even each year because of out-of-pocket expenses and having a second residence in Phoenix during session. This is not a part-time job. Our legislators work year round, traveling thousands of miles to meet with constituents and attend various functions. While the “gift” laws require expenses on behalf of legislators to be reported, most of these items include travel expenses or registration to events we are requested or required to attend.

Transparency in government: Transparency is an absolute must. One of the biggest problems facing our nation today is the mistrust and lack of confidence in our elected officials. We see this everyday in the national media where the public has not been informed or was informed incorrectly about issues facing our country. One of the few ways we can regain that trust and confidence is by promoting full transparency at all levels and holding them accountable for not being honest with the citizens. Lying to the voters is not acceptable on any level of government.

Pro-life / pro-choice: I am a pro-life candidate and oppose abortion except in the cases of rape, incest, or the life of the mother.

Public policy advice: First, I listen to the voters. We are elected to represent their voices at the Capitol. I do extensive reading and research on every issue. When a bill is being discussed, I listen to the arguments on both sides to see their perspective and ask many questions. I seek out the advice from those who have institutional knowledge, as it seems many of these same issues come up every few years. We are very fortunate in having intelligent and experienced legislators serving in the House and Senate. Each one of us comes to the table with expertise in our fields. Depending on the subject, I will seek their opinions and views based on their personal knowledge and experiences on the subject at hand.