Campaign website: www.jimsmallwoodforcolorado.com
What makes you the best choice for this office?
Having represented Douglas County and Senate District 4 for the past four years, I believe I have a proven public track record as a problem solver who listens and works across the aisle. I have successfully carried dozens of pieces of legislation that focus on government efficiency, lowering health care costs, increasing access to care, promoting free markets and protecting Colorado children. Virtually every law that I sponsored had strong bipartisan and bicameral support, and that mentality for a legislator is needed more than ever, in my opinion.
If you're elected, what is one single issue that will be at the top of your agenda?
This is unquestionably improving the process around safely “re-opening” Colorado. This legislature struggled to pass a balanced budget knowing that the pandemic and subsequent recession crippled businesses and families. Eventually, those economic realities hit tax revenues while the need for services increased, in many cases. Everyone in government needs to take a hard look at Colorado's reaction to the pandemic and learn from what happened, both scientifically and economically.
Although most of the decisions came from the executive branch, I think the legislature needs to be much more visible in expressing the concerns of constituents affected by those decisions.
If you're elected, what must you accomplish in order for you to consider your term a success?
I plan to continue to focus on helping Douglas County be the place so many want to live, play, work and raise a family. The majority party in Colorado continues to target areas like Douglas County with higher taxes labeled as fees, job-killing restrictions on businesses and questionable infringements on our Constitutional rights. For this term to be a success, elected leaders need to defend places like Douglas County from continued government overreach.
In your eyes, what issues do your constituents care about the most?
Most constituents who reach out to me are concerned about the government's response to the pandemic and the state's struggles to provide necessary services during this time. The Medicaid, unemployment insurance, motor vehicle, and parks systems all experienced challenges that put our residents in exceedingly uncomfortable or even dangerous medical, financial and emotional situations.
Why are you seeking this office?
I still feel there is unfinished work to be done in my final term in office. I am not alone in knowing that healthcare costs still need to be properly addressed with a long-term solution. Colorado still doesn't have a solid plan to address our decaying roads and bridges. Many residents are now concerned about health, safety and security, and the pandemic is certainly not over. I believe that having an elected leader with experience, integrity and a reputation for hard work and respectful collaboration with members of both political parties is something that Douglas County needs and wants.
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