ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 38 – NORM FREY
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Assembly District 38 includes all of Churchill County and portions of Lyon County – east of Dayton, north to Fernley and south to Smith Valley. This is a vacant seat and there are two candidates in this Primary race, Robin Titus and Norm Frey. Both responded to this interview.
1. Give a brief summation of your professional and political background.
Fourth generation Nevadan, born and raised in Fallon Nevada, BS Degree from UNR, Manage 900 acre family farm, 3 children and 10 grandchildren. Churchill County Republican Central Committee 1976 to present (chair in early 1980’s), Unsuccessfully ran for Assembly District 35 in 1998, Elected to Churchill County Commission in 2000 (chair 2011-2012), Nevada Association of Counties 2003-2012 (chair, 2006, Honor roll recipient, Legislative committee chair 2007-2011, Emeritus Committee), Nevada Works 2001-3 and 2009-12 (Local Elected Official chair 2011-12), Western Nevada Development District 2001-12, Central Nevada Regional Water Authority 2007 to present. Local boards: Newlands Water Protective Association,
2. Define your district – geographic boundaries, demographic makeup, and political balance.
Assembly District 38 consists of Churchill and Lyon Counties (less a portion in the Dayton area). Agriculture, warehousing, manufacturing, military and geothermal power are the main industries. The district is 60% Republican and there is no Democratic candidate.
3. If this is your first time running for office (or this position), why are you running for this position? If you are an incumbent, what have been your top accomplishments as a legislator?
I have gained a lot of knowledge as a businessperson and County Commissioner. I believe that this knowledge and experience will be valuable at the Nevada Legislature. As a leader in lobbying on behalf of NACO groups, we were successful in obtaining geothermal rents and royalties for 30 Western counties and full funding of PILT for 1850 counties. When I “Termed Out” as a County Commissioner, Churchill County was debt free.
4. What makes you more qualified to serve in this position than your opponent?
I have vastly more leadership experience in governance.
5. There is a well-publicized, on-going philosophical split among many in the Republican Party. Describe your political philosophy in relation to this ‘moderate’ conservative versus ‘tea party’ conservative divide.
I am a fiscal and Constitutional conservative who has a history of finding solutions to complex problems by working with people and building coalitions.
6. What do you see as the three most important issues related to your district?
a) Federal intrusion into our lives in the areas of federally managed lands, health care and education.
b) Decreasing Nevada’s burden on business.
c) Crime and drugs.
d) Protecting Nevada water law.
7. As a legislator, you are allowed to present a specific number of bills during the legislative session. Do you have any specific bills in mind?
Not at this time. I am currently gathering information and ideas from my prospective constituents and business leaders from around the state.
8. What is your position in regards to the taxes imposed in 2009 that were to ‘sunset’ in 2011, but were re-approved by the 2011 and 2013 legislature?
If they were supposed to sunset/go away, they should go away.
9. How would you address improving the performance of Nevada’s public schools.
I favor more school choice and local control of our schools.
10. To what degree should the State support Charter Schools and those students opting to attend a school outside their district? Do you support universal school vouchers, providing the money goes to the student/parent and not to any particular school?
I was a member of the Gateways to Success Charter School Board of Directors and I have supported school choice for a long time. A properly structured voucher program should be implemented.
11. The State Legislature has found innovative ways to circumvent the state law banning the passing down of unfunded mandates to local governing entities. What is your position in regards to using such actions to fund state needs?
I have worked for years as a member and president of NACO to stop the unfunded mandates. I also oppose the “sweeping” of funds that are in local government accounts.
12. What is your position in regards to increasing Nevada’s minimum wage?
I oppose an increase in the minimum wage.
13. Do you believe the gaming and mining industries pay ‘their fair share’ in contributing to the state’s economy? Explain.
Yes they pay their fair share. We cannot attack business and expect business to flourish. The “Education Initiative” is hurting our recovery now. No smart businessperson will invest in Nevada while this tax is being proposed or fought over in the courts for years to come.
14. With annual approval by Congress required, the Federal government pays state and local governments for the public lands (exempt from local taxation) within their jurisdiction (P.I.L.T.). Approximately 87-percent of Nevada is owned by Federal entities. Define your position in regards to states taking control of (Federal government relinquishing ownership to) all or a portion of these lands.
If the State can make money from state management, then I do not oppose state management. The $23 M in PILT revenues to local governments would have to be made up by the State. I believe that the non-patented lands are simply state lands that are being managed by the federal government.
15. In 1979 Nevada passed a bill legalizing the use of marijuana for medical purposes. It was repealed eight years later (1987). What is your position in regards to Nevada once again legalizing the use of marijuana for medical purposes?
I have no problem using marijuana for legitimate medical purposes. There should be stiff penalties for doctors that abuse the privilege as we do with the abuse of prescribed narcotics.
Legalizing the sale of marijuana, period? I oppose the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes.
16. It appears that millions of acres of Nevada lands are destined to have the sage grouse (among other species) listed as a protected species. What is your position in regards to this issue? Explain.
I oppose the listing of sage grouse as an endangered or threatened species. The Endangered Species Act is being abused by environmental zealots.
17. Define your position on fracking and other means of oil exploration in Nevada.
Fracking should only be used on a case by case basIs that takes into account all of the many variables such as geology, groundwater and water consumed/contaminated.
Do you support coal fired plants? I believe that nuclear power is a safer alternative. Maybe some day coal could become a clean alternative. The Pinion Pine Project (coal gasification) spent hundreds of millions of dollars and it was a bust.
18. In efforts to bring new businesses to Nevada, the Catalyst Fund was established. This is funded by state tax dollars. The Governor’s Office of Economic Development receives and then votes on applications from businesses and, through local governmental entities, subsidizes those selected. What is your position in regards to the Catalyst Fund? Do you have other ideas to encourage new businesses to locate in Nevada?
I oppose the use of the Catalyst Fund and state tax abatements to pick winners and losers in the private sector. Local governments should be allowed to grant tax abatements since it is their money that the State is giving away. A less complicated tax system with less complicated oversight would do more to attract and retain businesses that create jobs and thus increase state revenues.
19. Do you support “campus carry” legislation allowing licensed CCW permit holders over the age of 21 to carry their weapons on Nevada college and university campuses? Would you extend the same right to secondary school campuses?
CCW permits are an infringement on our Constitutional right to keep and bare arms. Defenseless people become targets. I believe that with proper policies in place, schools and other public places would be safer if responsible people had the ability to carry firearms. Mental health is a bigger contributor to violent acts.
20. If there is any issue that you are concerned about that has not been addressed in this interview, this is your opportunity to address it:
I will work to protect Nevada water law, make Nevada more business friendly and to provide opportunity for all of Nevada’s citizens.