Archive for Thursday, October 30, 2008

Holland, Pine battle for State Senate seat

October 30, 2008

Two veteran legislators are going head-to-head for the Senate seat in Kansas’ 3rd District.

Incumbent Republican Roger Pine has held the position since January 2005. His challenger is Tom Holland, a Democrat who since January 2003 has represented the 10th District in the Kansas House.

Holland, 47, Baldwin City, touts his record on helping pass tax cuts for senior citizens and businesses. He said he wants to focus on making health insurance more affordable for all Kansans, protecting and growing Kansas jobs and wages and continued investments in education.

Holland also thinks the state needs a long-range energy plan, similar to past 10-year state transportation plans. Holland voted against the proposals for new coal-fired plants in western Kansas. Coal plants represented too much risk for ratepayers and the state because of uncertainty of possible federal implementation of carbon dioxide emissions, he believes.

“I believe that coal, nuclear, wind and solar all figure into our long-term energy plan,” Holland said.

Pine, 68, rural Linwood, supported the coal plants because he said they would utilize the latest technology to burn coal and cause less pollution than old existing plants. He also supports use of renewable energy such as wind, solar and hydroelectric sources.

Concerning the state budget, increased spending should be curtailed and waste “rooted out,” said Holland, owner and president of Holland Technologies Inc., an information technology firm.

Pine said there should be a scrutiny of funds available and state agencies should have an opportunity to suggest where budget cuts can be made. He also urges efficiency in state spending.

Pine, a farmer, has spent much of the campaign explaining why documents listed him as living at a rural Lawrence residence when he also had a home in rural Linwood, both in his Senate district. He said he believed until the August primary election that he could choose to vote in either location “until I was told otherwise.” He has since re-registered to vote in Leavenworth County.

The Senate district includes Jefferson County, much of Leavenworth County and in Douglas County Eudora, Grant, Palmyra townships and part of Wakarusa Township.

— Staff writer Mike Belt can be reached at 832-7165.


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