Follette, Bill

Republican – Legislative District 24 Senate

Phone: (602) 625-5890

Email: [email protected]

Address: 8340 E Monte Vista Rd , Scottsdale, AZ 85257

Arizona since: Birth

Occupation: Birthdate: July 1974. Retired firefighter/paramedic, City of Mesa, 2012. City of Phoenix Aquatics, 1990-99.

Marital: Single

Education: Paramedic certificate and fire science certificate. Attended Maricopa Community Colleges, Creighton University and Brophy College Preparatory.

Political experience: None.

Interests: As a native to Arizona, I enjoy day trips throughout our great state. I also enjoy spending my free time with my family and my two dogs.

Two biggest issues: The two biggest issues facing my district are a lack of jobs and blight, which leads to more crime. Once elected, I would try to concentrate legislative efforts into job creation utilizing infill projects and creating incentives for small and local businesses to come back to District 24. This would not only help with job creation but also attack some of the blight that has been created due to empty shopping centers. As a retired public safety officer, I have seen firsthand what a lack of jobs and blight can do to a community and its citizens.

Budget priorities: Being fiscally conservative, [I believe] we must continue to look into areas where we can create cost savings, [whether] it be consolidating departments/divisions to cutting the red tape and management. We also need to concentrate efforts on increasing opportunity for businesses and small businesses in particular. This in turn would create a higher revenue stream and increase employment opportunities for our citizens. That being said, I feel that public safety and child welfare (including working with all of the professional medical associations to create an ongoing and effective culture of minimum annual pro bono contributions by all medical practitioners to the children that truly cannot afford needed medical care) should remain amongst our budget priorities.

Fiscal philosophy: Fiscal conservatism. I feel that we don’t have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem. We do not have a need to raise taxes on our citizens; we have a need to rein in spending on bloated state and city government organizations and their incessant cry for increased sales taxes. Government cannot grow faster than the ability of the citizens to pay for it for long without consequences. Spenders want low-turnout elections dominated by government interest groups and groupies.

Common Core: This is a very complicated issue. Do I feel Common Core is the best? No. But according to my understanding, as we sit right now, there is no other alternative. I am not willing to put our youth’s federal tax dollars at risk just to make a political statement. I am very open to finding a better solution to this topic and am very willing to listen to any and all new ideas. I have faith that while working with these standards we, as a state, can find other alternatives that will be better suited to prepare our children and increase their educational proficiency.

Gifts to elected officials: By current law, a state officer shall not accept from a principal or lobbyist either of the following: 1. Gifts with a total value of more than ten dollars during any calendar year. 2. Gifts that are designed to influence the state officer’s or state employee’s official conduct. The statute includes quite a bit of explanatory information, but what is lacking and needs to be reformed is twofold. A requirement for transparency and the required methodology for public disclosure of every gift needs to be crafted. Also, the loophole allowing elected officials to personally benefit from “speaking engagements” needs to be closed.

Transparency in government: I believe that government must strive to conduct the public’s business in a manner that is accessible and transparent to all its citizens. Our participatory democracy is best served by ensuring that the public has an understanding of its government’s decision-making process and how best to participate. In addition, the public should have easy-access to public information, including meeting agendas and minutes, financial and budget information, and documents and reports.

Pro-life / pro-choice: From a fiscal standing, I feel that the state should not support or subsidize any elected medical procedure. This legal issue is better dealt with at the federal level. I personally feel in the right to choose.

Public policy advice: I am a true believer that a state senators’ job as an elected official is to represent the community that has entrusted them. I currently, and in the future, would turn to my constituents that I would be representing in my district for advice on public policy issues along with experts in the field on particular issues.