Kingman Daily Miner: Gov. Doug Ducey wants to “secure Arizona’s future”
Kingman Daily Miner
Travis Rains, Vanessa Espinoza
KINGMAN — Gov. Doug Ducey stopped by The Daily Miner on Friday to discuss his thoughts on solar power, health care, and the state and future of Mohave County.
The governor said he is an advocate for solar, affordable and accessible energy. The energy discussion is of paramount importance in Arizona, where Ducey said people can die from power outages. However, he thinks Proposition 127, which would require utility companies to generate 50 percent of their power with renewable energy by 2030, could pose a problem for families, businesses and schools.
“I have not been a fan of Proposition 127 because of the statistics that I’ve read that it’s going to raise prices on families $1,000 a family,” he said, adding that the proposition would lead to a “tremendous” cost increase for schools.
He said cleaner energy is attainable in Arizona via innovations in the industry, but that Prop 127 is the “wrong idea.”
Ducey also gave his thoughts on health care in Arizona under Republican leadership, and addressed its affordability, or lack thereof. He pointed to the previous presidential administration’s policies as to why premiums are so high.
“What we’re experiencing today is a result of that,” Ducey said. “In Arizona, under Obamacare, we’ve gone from 24 providers in our state to just one provider in 14 out of our 15 counties. And it’s really that lack of competition that’s causing these price increases in terms of deductions and premiums.”
He said Arizona is ready to address health care and wants a seat at the congressional table for healthcare reform.
And Ducey likes to get out of the Capitol so he can learn what’s important to rural communities like Kingman. Just last week he met with Mohave County community leaders, mayors, county supervisors, healthcare professionals and law enforcement in an effort to paint a picture of what’s important to Mohave County.
“What I’ve heard when I come to Mohave County is that, yes education’s important, but so is economic development, water is critical, infrastructure investment is critical, and so those are things we’ve been able to improve over the last four years,” the governor said.
He pointed to the more than 7,600 new jobs in the county, the highest population growth since 2006, and a 3.8 percent decrease in unemployment.
Ducey also called attention to $706,000 that was being used to help balance the state budget during the recession, which is now available to Mohave County. The county also has $550,000 in state assistance and an additional $3 million for rural hospital health care and medical education than it had in 2015.
“So this focus on responsible state budgeting, making tough decisions at the state capitol, has resulted in additional dollars for Mohave County,” Ducey said.
Other areas of focus for Governor Ducey include securing the state’s economic future, increasing safety in schools and neighborhoods, and border security.