Wednesday, April 23, 2014 07:12pm
North Adams, MA now: 46 °   
Send news, tips, press releases and questions to info@iBerkshires.com
The Berkshires online guide to events, news and Berkshire County community information.
SIGN IN | REGISTER NOW   

Home About Archives RSS Feed
Return to election home page
Voter Guide: State Rep. Candidate L. Scott Laugenour
By Andy McKeever On: 07:26PM / Saturday November 03, 2012
Lee Scott Laugenour
Green-Rainbow candidate
Laugenour's Ballot
Q1: Right to Repair: Yes.
Q2: Assisted Suicide: Yes
Q3: Medical Marijuana: Yes

Other issues:

  • Increased awareness of invasive species.
  • Supports standardized testing in high schools but says the tests should be fully comprehensive and not just in a few subjects.
  • Increased drug abuse clinics in areas of most concern.
LENOX, Mass. — If a business takes care of the people, the people will take care of the business and state representative candidate Lee Scott Laugenour says government should be the same way.

That piece of advice was given to Laugenour years ago from the owner of the Marriott Hotels, where Laugenour worked for 25 years, moving up from the front desk to a regional vice president. The California native found his way to the Berkshires in 1993, when he was attracted by the cultural scene. He started as part-time resident and later moved to Lenox full time.

Now, he is mounting his second attempt to represent the 4th Berkshire District in the state House of Representatives as a "fresh voice" for a government he feels is no longer working. On Beacon Hill, he is hoping to push out "corporate interest" that is keeping the government from fully serving the people.

"I don't believe our government is working," Laugenour said on Friday, just days before the election. "I think a number of people want to see some change."

Laugenour says he is going to be the "one voice" in the State House for that change for those who want things to run differently. Particularly, Laugenour wants to revamp the tax system, have the state to take over health care, increase green energy use and bring more money into cities, towns and the education system.

"We have an unfair tax system right now," the Green-Rainbow candidate said. "We are losing money."

Laugenour says he'd create a "fair tax" system by increasing the exemption for income tax to $46,000 — thus creating a more progressive tax. By taxing income more than $46,000 at about 8 percent, Laugenour says it will increase revenue for the state as well as create more of a "net" fairness because lower incomes would be paying less.

Increasing the exemption avoids going through a constitutional amendment, which would otherwise would be required to create a progressive tax, he said. Additionally, Laugenour says there are too many tax exemptions and the state should close some of those to increase revenue.

While opponents could argue that it would drive business away, Laugenour said he'd incentive businesses to move to the state by removing health-care costs. Laugenour advocated for the state to put aside 5 percent of gross incomes to pay for all of the state's health care needs.

"Universal health care is as important as roads and bridges," Laugenour said, adding that other countries he has lived in have been successful in creating universal systems. But in the United States, he says lobbyists have derailed that conversation.

The increased revenue gained from a new tax system would allow the state to provide investments in education, cities and towns, and public transportation, he said. He recalled when he was going to school, his music teachers had a closet full of instruments that he could borrow, which triggered his interest in music and eventually led him to the Berkshires.

Now, he said, many students don't have those options and those type of extracurricular classes require parents to pay a fee, which does not provide equality across economic levels. As a former English teacher in Japan, Laugenour said he highly regards public education and wants to raise the level here.

Another service role the government could play would be to allow municipalities to own their own utilities, he said, and would encourage undoing a law that outlaws that type of ownership. In the 20 or so communities that do still own their electrical services, the storm response has been stronger and the rates are lower, he said.

With ownership of energy, Laugenour hopes that it would increase the use of solar, wind, hydro and conservation to decrease the state's carbon footprint. He believes that all of those options need to be utilized but it'll be up to the towns to decide which projects they want.

While some argued that the recently spiked wind-siting bill would streamline and encourage wind power, Laugenour says he does not support that bill because it opens the door for more corruption.

Instead of a three-member appointed panel to make the decision for a town, Laugenour said those projects should go to town meeting. That will create more openness in the process because any "secretive" deals could be voted down, he said.

"There are some projects at town meeting that will be supported," Laugenour said. "There are projects I'd vote for and there are projects I'd vote against here... every project is different."

To increase conservation, Laugenour also says public transportation needs to be expanded across the state.


0Comments
     
Election Text Ads
Advertise on iBerkshires.com

Where to vote in Berkshire County

Town Elections
& Meetings

Adams: Election, May 5, 7-7;

Cheshire: Election, May 5;

Clarksburg: Election, May 27; town meeting, May 28

Williamstown: Election, May 13, 7-8; town meeting, May 20, 7 p.m.

 
Municipal Elections

The cities of Pittsfield and North Adams will hold municipal elections for mayor, city council and school committee in 2015

You may vote absentee: if you will be absent from your town or city on election day, have a physical disability that prevents you from voting at the polls or cannot vote at the polls because to religious beliefs.

2010 Special Senate Election Results

Election 2009 Stories

Election Day 2008

 

 

 



Categories:
1st Berkshire (42)
2010 (0)
2011 (69)
2012 (59)
2013 (59)
2014 (27)
2nd Berkshire (28)
3rd Berkshire (16)
4th Berkshire (14)
attorney general (2)
auditor (4)
campaign (52)
candidate forums (47)
city council (38)
Congress (22)
election (65)
endorsements (45)
events (27)
fundraising (9)
governor (20)
letters (9)
local (16)
mayor (47)
news (8)
school committee (20)
selectmen (18)
selectmen (15)
sheriff (28)
state (21)
statements (45)
Archives:
April 2014 (5)
April 2013 (7)
March 2014 (6)
February 2014 (1)
January 2014 (4)
November 2013 (10)
October 2013 (21)
September 2013 (7)
August 2013 (5)
July 2013 (2)
June 2013 (7)
May 2013 (7)
Tags:
Debate Bowler Candidates Letters To The Editor Town Election Election 2014 Williamstown Bosley Town Elections Special Election Adams Mayor Preliminary Pittsfield Macdonald City Council Patrick Boucher Debates Gubernatorial Campaign North Adams Bissaillon 1st Mass U.s. Senate Election 2013 Warren Primary Cariddi Szczepaniak Mark Democrat Municipal Election Democratic Party Berkshire Brigades
Popular Entries:
Election Day 2010
Bosley Looks to Wind Up Legislative Career
Longtime City Councilor Cariddi Kicks Off State Rep Campaign
North Adams Mayoral Debate Video
Three Make Case for 2nd District Seat
Candidates Forum Scheduled for Aug 17
Cariddi Clear Winner in 1st District
There's a New Sheriff in Town
Bissaillon Campaign Hosts Pancake Breakfast
Bump Would Audit Publicly Funded Criminal Defense System
Recent Entries:
Green-Rainbow Statewide Candidates Launch 'Listening' Tour
Economic Talk Dominates Williamstown Selectmen's Race
Adams Candidates Hold Forth at Maple Grove Forum
State Senator Finegold Seeking Treasurer Post
Green Rainbow Party Places 3 Candidates on Statewide Ballot
Four Races on Cheshire Town Election Ballot
Adams Voters to Decide Three Races on 2014 Ballot
Lt. Gov. Candidate Kerrigan Building 'Grassroots' Campaign
Downing Kicks Off Senate Re-election Campaign
Williamstown Ballot Spaces Filling for Town Election


View All
Softball: MG vs Drury
4-22-14 Cat Record allowed just two hits and an unearned...
Touch A Truck
Child Care of the Berkshires held its annual Touch A Truck...
Lacrosse: Hoosac vs. Taconic
Baseball: Pittsfield vs Lee
Chad Shade went 2-for-4 with a run scored, and Sam Fick...
Clarksburg Egg Scramble 2014
The annual Easter egg hunt, sponsored by the VFW, was held...
Pittsfield Egg Scramble 2014
The annual Egg Scramble at Morningside Community School saw...
Track: Monument @Hoosac...
Monument Mountain bested Hoosac Valley on its home turf...
Girls and Boys Tennis: PHS vs...
4-17-14 Girls and Boys tennis match between PHS vs Mt....
Softball: Lee vs Hoosac
4-14-14 Kassandra Kazimierczak went 2-for-4 with a double...
Baseball: MG vs Hoosac
4-11-14 Dan Flynn's suicide squeeze with the bases loaded...
Softball: MG vs McCann
4-11-14 Mount Greylock and McCann Tech played an atypical...
Sullivan School CPR Class
Seventh-graders at Sullivan School in North Adams learned...
Lacrosse: Mounties vs. Hoosac
Mounties overwhelmed Hoosac Valley on Wednesday 14-1....
North Adams Furnace St. Fire
Firefighters contained a top floor apartment blaze on...
Berkshire Chamber Career Fair...
More than 50 employers connected with job seekers at...
Lacrosse: MG vs St. Joe
Mount Greylock boys lacrosse team won 17-4 St. Joseph at...
Softball: MG vs Drury
4-22-14 Cat Record allowed just two hits and an unearned...
Touch A Truck
Child Care of the Berkshires held its annual Touch A Truck...
Lacrosse: Hoosac vs. Taconic
Baseball: Pittsfield vs Lee
Chad Shade went 2-for-4 with a run scored, and Sam Fick...
Clarksburg Egg Scramble 2014
The annual Easter egg hunt, sponsored by the VFW, was held...
| Home | A & E | Business | Community News | Dining | Real Estate | Schools | Sports & Outdoors | Berkshires Weather | Weddings
Advertise | Recommend This Page | Help Contact Us | Privacy Policy| User Agreement
iBerkshires.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 102 Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-664-4251
© 2000 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved