State Rep. Marty Seifert, R-Marshall, a GOP candidate for governor, says he wants state government to stop requiring cities and counties to carry out costly new rules and regulations.
Seifert invited three county commissioners to a news conference today, where he proposed a moratorium on unfunded mandates to local government and small businesses. He said the plan was modeled after one recently introduced in New Jersey. If elected governor, Seifert said he would issue an executive order on day one to stop mandates. He also plans to introduce a mandate-reduction bill in the 2010 session.
As an example, Seifert pointed to a state requirement that all counties, rural and urban, hire a weed inspector.
"I think if it is an essential thing that the state feels it has to mandate, it ought to pay for it," Seifert said. "All too often we've had the Legislature making rules and regulations like this, and we never go back and review the need for it."
Seifert also talked about the gubernatorial campaign, including his search for a running mate.
Seifert told reporters that he's asked about two dozen people if they'd want to be included on his list of potential lieutenant governors. He partially confirmed a report that state Rep. Laura Brod, R-New Prague, recently turned him down. But he insisted she was only asked to be one of several people on the list. Seifert added that one or two others also said no.
"The reality is when you talk to two or three dozen people to find out if they're interested, you're going to have some folks for whatever reason that are going to say this is not the right time in my life, this is not something that's good for me, or whatever," Seifert said.
Seifert said he plans to announce a running mate by late March, well ahead of the state GOP convention.
Seifert also distanced himself from an effort to convince another GOP gubernatorial candidate, Rep. Tom Emmer, R-Delano, to run instead for attorney general. One of his supporters recently sent out an invitation to join the "Draft Tom Emmer for Attorney General" Facebook group. But Seifert said he had nothing to do with the effort.
"I have supporters who are interested in that," Seifert said. "Some of Tom's supporters are trying to get me to run for Congress in the 7th district. This type of stuff happens."
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So he would issue "an executive order on day one to stop mandates." How about studying the Constitution first?