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NAME: Carol Polan
CANDIDATE FOR: West Virginia House of Delegates 16th District (Covers parts of Cabell and Lincoln counties)
HOME CITY: Huntington
HOME COUNTY: Cabell
EDUCATION: Graduate – WV State University
CURRENT OFFICE OR OCCUPATION: Huntington City Council At Large
OTHER WORK HISTORY: During my lifetime, I have babysat, waited tables, taught school, sold toothpaste, and had an Appraisal practice.
CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS: League of Women Voters, Democratic Women’s Club, Community Voluntee
ENDORSEMENTS: AFL – CIO
FAMILY: I am a widow, blessed with five generations, including my mother living in West Virginia.
PERSONAL STATEMENT: My experiences are pure West Virginian. I was born in Braxton County, finished high school in Wayne County, raised my family in Jackson County, and attended college in Kanawha County. I married Chuck Polan and moved to Cabell County in 1998. I have enjoyed volunteering in the community and trying to raise my children and grandchildren to believe in themselves and help others. I’ve balanced budgets, ran companies, taken care of sick, and buried loved ones. My experience tells me if it’s good for a child’s future, it’s good for you and me. File your census, vote and pray with me for our country.
Questions from the West Virginia League of Women Voters:
1. With the decline in the extraction industries in West Virginia, what do you think should be done to diversify the state’s economy?
Immediately set out to become the manufacturing epicenter for a new American Pharmaceutical Industry. We are geographically located to reach eastern markets quickly. This makes our area perfect for warehousing and shipping food, medical and military inventories. Legislative support for small business. Stop talking about alternative fuel and implement their use. Allow the Hemp and Ginseng markets to develop.
2. Do you support recent weakening of EPA regulations concerning air and water quality? Why or why not?
No, without clean water and air, humans cannot live.
3. What role do you see for state government in reversing West Virginia’s population decline?
Enhance services for seniors to provide safety and security in retirement. Jobs are the missing link to population. We have to leave no stone unturned in the pursuit and acquisition of employment for West Virginia.
Additional questions from The Herald-Dispatch:
4. The state’s foster care system struggles to care for the 7,000 plus children who are now in it. Some action has been taken in recent months, but what further action do you think might be necessary?
West Virginia is spending huge amounts per child on each of these 7,000 children. It is not working. They are neglected in our care on every level including violent abuse and disappearance. We must immediately develop a stronger safety net for these kids. The money is there, it’s just not being used wisely to clean up this mess. I can help.
5. There have been several attempts to reduce taxes on business in the state, including one failed in this past legislative session. Is it wise to keep pursuing tax breaks for business, at the possible expense of residential taxpayers? Do you think the state’s tax structure needs an overhaul?
The short answer is no and yes. It all comes back to jobs. We absolutely cannot use residential taxes as a fall back plan. Homeownership may seem like an easy target for revenue, but more residential property tax makes us less attractive to new business. Low property tax is an incentive for a new development.
6. Do you think the educational reform bill passed in 2019 is working/will be effective?
This answer might prove I’m old. Is it good for children? We are not addressing the needs for our existing public schools. My concern, three charter schools by 2021, then three per year thereafter. Will this demoralize our current teachers? Will this break the teachers union? Whose kids will attend? Probably not kids from Salt Rock. Is this good for children?
7. How would you describe efforts so far to add more support staff in the state’s schools to help children in troubled homes?
It is a small step in the right direction.
8. What can the state government do to improve workforce development in West Virginia?
Workforce Development is finally on track to getting it right. We are seeing support for training in fields we need here, which provide a wage possible for prosperity. We need plumbers, electricians, carpenters; partnership with local unions for a career path is critical for success. We also need programs supported in community college.
9. West Virginia has been especially hard hit by the opioid abuse epidemic. What do you see as the role of the legislature in addressing this crisis?
The legislature must be the safety net for local programs. Continued communication between local communities and the state will allow the problems to be worked out.
10. How would you improve the state’s access to broadband internet?
As a member of Huntington City Council, I supported an ordinance to provide 5G with a partnership with AT&T. This has to be replicated throughout WV to give us a chance to prosper in the digital age. Technology = Jobs = Prosperity.