Meet Jana Kemp, Gubernatorial Independent Candidate – Local News Story – KIFI Idaho Falls

October 2, 2010

Meet Jana Kemp, Gubernatorial Independent Candidate – Local News Story – KIFI Idaho Falls.

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The Governor’s Mansion

December 8, 2009

Dear Jana:

Are you going to live in the Governor’s mansion?

No.  The current governor’s mansion was a generous gift to the state, but we need to return the property to the donors.  It is not a practical site for a governor to live or entertain. 

The monies needed to remodel and adapt the site have not been garnered and the cost to the state to maintain the empty facility is hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. 

Yes, we could sell the property, but we are not in the right economic cycle to sell.  Ada County property values have dropped 34% since the time of the gift.  It’s simply not a good use of tax dollars to continue to maintain the property. 

There are plenty of great facilities and caterers available in Idaho.  Utilizing Idaho businesses for state functions would benefit our home-state businesses.

Can Government Work Together?

December 7, 2009

Dear Jana:

The 2009 Idaho Legislative session was an extremely long one. It seemed the agenda of the Executive Branch and Legislative Branch conflicted and very little was accomplished. Is there a better way for the two branches to work together for the good of Idaho?

Yes. The starting place is with RESPECT. As a former legislator, I respect the law-making process and the people who are dedicated to it. As governor, I will listen to the Legislators and work together to prioritize the needs of the citizens of Idaho.

The constituents of each district are served by the Legislators, but they are also served by the governor, who must view the entire state as a whole. Our state government is made up of different branches responsible for different jobs: both the legislative and executive (governor’s) branches of government have the mutual goal of doing what’s best for the state, but from different points of view.

We must work together toward that goal—we cannot dig our heels in on either side.

Championing Business in Idaho

September 29, 2009

Dear Jana:

Governor Otter has announced the extent of the planned budget holdbacks for the 2010 budget. The largest percentage of holdbacks proposed are in the Labor and Commerce departments. There’s no mention at this time of how revenue could be increased, only how budgets will be tightened. Some are concerned that this is not the best long term view of how to raise revenue for the state. What would you do to encourage state revenue production?

I would focus on job creation through the small business owners who are already working in Idaho. The next big companies to be recognized worldwide are right here in Idaho. We need to find them and champion who they are and what they are doing so they can participate in a worldwide economy and thus bring new revenue streams into the state.

We need to have a Director of Commerce who will champion small businesses and a governor who will champion small businesses.

We also need to look at other state agencies that currently generate revenue and explore how their staffing levels can be maintained and additional revenue created. For example, the University of Idaho could offer 4-H classes for a small fee. That would not only help children participate in activities, but it would also provide income to the University beyond increasing the tuition of full-time students.

Balancing the state budget needs to handled not only through cost savings, but by new revenues created through new business development and new ideas.

Let’s Consider All Our Energy Options

September 21, 2009

Dear Jana:

There’s been some interest by nuclear energy companies in building nuclear plants in Idaho. How do you feel about nuclear energy?

All the research I have seen indicates that energy conservation alone will not provide a cure for the way we consume energy in this country and around the world. It will take a combination of conservation efforts and additional energy production.

The good news is, with today’s technology and government regulations, we have the ability to produce energy in more environmentally responsible ways than ever before.

My position is that we need to be looking at all energy options before we rule any one option out.

We have the brain power in Idaho to solve our energy problems and contribute to the world economy at the same time.

Federal Stimulus Packages: Show Us the Money

September 21, 2009

Dear Jana:  

Among states receiving funds from recent federal stimulus packages, Idaho is in the top five in terms of amount of money received per capita. Where is it all that money? Where has it been applied? 

The Federal Government requires certain processes to be completed in order to gain access to the money.  For example, some funds are only available for schools, etc. It appears Idaho’s state government is not taking the steps necessary to gain access to the money.

The money was offered early in the year. Now we’re nearing the end of the year and nothing has happened.  I would use my 16 years of experience in consulting and facilitating businesses and governments to expedite the process.  Sitting on money that is meant for the stimulation of the economy does not stimulate the economy.

Budget Shortfalls: The Unkindest Cut

September 21, 2009

Dear Jana:

It was recently announced that this year’s state budget is short millions of dollars due to a shortage in revenue. The current administration has already made cuts to some state agencies and is currently discussing additional cuts. As governor, how would you approach the problem of this revenue shortfall?

We’ve seen a number of across-the-board cuts to our budget in Idaho. I believe wholesale, across-the-board cuts aren’t in the best interest of the state going forward. Before cuts are made, a clear analysis of every state government function needs to be conducted in order to determine exactly where cuts should be made. 

As governor, I would go directly to the state employees who know what’s working and what’s not working in their agencies. For instance, we should not be cutting agencies that make money for Idaho. A good example is the State Tax Commission. The State Tax Commission generates revenue for the state, yet staff has been cut recently. Cutting staff in that agency doesn’t help us generate revenue for the state.

There are some agencies that could be logically combined together in order to create greater efficiencies from an administrative standpoint and greater efficiencies in how services are provided.

My conservative estimate is that we could save $1 to $2 million per year in ongoing, cumulative savings by combining certain agencies.

Some agencies must be analyzed with particular care before any cuts are made. The Department of Health and Welfare, for example.

Across-the-board cuts in that agency diminish services to the extent that it allows the children of Idaho to be underserved and unprotected.