To the editor: Rep. Dakin outlines priorities, asks for voter input

State Rep. Leigh Dakin

State Rep. Leigh Dakin

Thank you very much, voters, for re-electing me to the Vermont state legislature from Windsor District 3-1.  I am honored to represent the citizens of Andover, Baltimore, Chester and North Springfield, particularly in this period of economic challenge for all of us.

As I return to the State House in January 2015, my focus will be on many issues, including:

  1. Education funding and education tax relief.  I am committed to working toward a solution to the increasing state education tax that landowners are paying in our district.  The state education tax increase in our recent property tax bill is unacceptable, particularly in the face of the previous efforts of our school boards in creating budgets with minimal increases.  Now that we all have a better understanding of how the tax rate is established, we have to find a workable means to keep our property taxes, particularly those for education, at a level that’s affordable for all of our property owners.
  2. Employment and job opportunities.  As we strive to improve our economy, we need to examine how our children are being educated and trained to enter the work force and post-secondary school education, and how we can assist our businesses in filling jobs with qualified applicants.  We need to encourage and support existing business owners in our state and to make our towns and communities better places in which to live, to be educated and to maintain a business.  Our communities need to be able to attract new residents to keep our schools full and our marketplaces active.
  3. Health and wellness.  My service on the House Committee on Health Care has supported progress in improving community and regional health care delivery at a more affordable cost.  To provide all eligible state residents with efficient and successful access to the purchase of health insurance online, our current health care exchange needs the necessary upgrades to overcome its unacceptable performance to allow for a successful November online health care sign-up.
  4. Universal health care.  While I am supportive of universal health care for all, I remain troubled by the lack of a proposal for this medical payment program for review by the legislature.  If we have no proposal to review in January,  then I am skeptical about the prospects of adopting universal health care in Vermont at the present.

I am meeting with the select boards at the respective town halls:

    • Andover, 953 Weston Andover Road: 6:30 p.m.  Monday, Nov. 24.
    • Baltimore, 1902 Baltimore Road: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 3.
    • Springfield, 96 Main St.: 6:30 p.m. on either Monday, Dec. 8 or Monday, Dec. 22.
    • Chester, 556 Elm St.: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 17.

I invite residents of those towns to attend those meetings as the select boards discuss with me issues of importance to them and to their towns.

I also invite you to contact me directly with your thoughts, questions and concerns.  My home telephone number is 802-875-3456; my email address is and my mailing address is P.O. Box 467, Chester, VT 05143

Leigh Dakin
State representative
Windsor 3-1

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