Joe Farrer - candidate for State Representative District 44
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How long have you lived in the area? 23 years
Why do you want to seek public office?
I want to bring smaller, smarter government to the State. Being someone who started his own business and has worked as a hospital clinic administrator for the last 15 years, I believe I can help bring real world solutions to the problems that plague our state government. From my experience on the Quorum Court, I know that we can trim budgets and save taxpayers money. I know there are practical things we can do to reduce costs and not raise taxes. My 25 years’ experience treating patients gives me a unique perspective to help this state deal with our healthcare, as I understand treatment providers and patients should be the decision makers, not government bureaucrats.
What qualifications do you have that enable you to meet the responsibilities of the office?
I have started a business with nothing but hard work. I have for the last 15 years and currently manage over 13 employees in a division of a hospital with a four million dollar budget. I am a private sector job creator. I have worked for the people of Lonoke County as Justice of the Peace working to lower costs to keep taxes down and bring accountability to politicians with blank checks. I have balanced budgets. Having treated patients for over 25 years, I understand the needs of the patient as a human being, not just a number. I have volunteered in our schools for 22 years.
What do you believe to be the most important issue facing this office?
I believe that the Medicaid shortfall will be the most pressing issue facing Arkansas this next year. Arkansas will have a 400 million deficit in Medicaid. With my 25 years of experience in healthcare I will be able to give insight to the legislature on how to repair this shortfall while continuing the current doctor patient relationships. I will protect the disabled and elderly citizens from the proposed Obamacare legislation.
How are you meeting the issue?
I plan to hold the state government accountable for the money they already get, begin to limit the expansion of government in people’s lives. Of course, my primary focus and expertise is health care. I expect to be on committees dealing with health care issues which in our country and state are in critical condition.
What improvements are you planning to make to the office?
I intend to be voting with what I expect to be the Republican majority, enacting legislation to bring about many changes in Arkansas. For over 138 years we have been governed in both chambers of our legislature by a single party. I plan to be a part of this change by enacting spending reform to trim the budget; streamlining Arkansas’ tax system; implementing new controls to prevent Medicaid waste, fraud, and abuse and supporting patient and free-market drivers, not large government programs; protecting Arkansas’ future by offering policies of opportunity for our citizens and businesses rather than allowing policies of destruction; implement legal and regulatory reform; and promoting educational excellence because our state’s economic viability will largely be determined by our continued investment and commitment to a higher level of achievement within our educational system.