Friday, October 24, 2008

Candidate Paul Halvorsen makes the pitch

School Board candidate Paul Halvorsen emailed me early this morning responding to my call out for candidate responses. Here is what he wrote:
I moved to Concord in 1997 after retiring from the US Air Force. In my over 21-years of service (7 enlisted and 14 as a commissioned officer) I was a military policeman, a bomb squad technician and a helicopter pilot. I'm currently employed by the City of Concord as an Assistant City Prosecutor and spent several years as a New Hampshire Public Defender. I was elected to the Concord City Council representing Ward 7 in 1998 and re-elected in 1999 (I did not run for re-election in 2001). In these jobs I've developed critical thinking skills, managed and developed budgets, engaged in short and long term goal oriented planning, and managed the administrative support for an organization of almost 200 people.

My educational background includes a J.D. from the Franklin Pierce Law Center, a Master of Forensic Science from The George Washington University, a Master of Public Administration from Golden Gate University and my B.S. from Minot State College.

I've taught at several colleges and universities as an adjunct professor (The graduate program at UNH - Manchester and undergraduate programs for Florida State University, Barry University and St. Leo College).

I can sum up my campaign in two words: Efficiency and Effectiveness. If you seek to apply those two qualities in establishing policy and making spending decisions only good results can follow. I believe that this is true no matter what the challenge. For example: When we look at school consolidation and apply those guiding principles the end result should be a plan that gives us the best bang for the taxpayer buck, ensures educational equality and excellence, maximizes the potential use of the buildings, saves carrying costs (i.e. heating/cooling/electric) and plans for the next 75+ years.

The school budget is approximately 68-million dollars and is, in summary, used to maintain and run all the infrastructure, teach and address the needs of about 5200 students and employ hundreds of people. We need to ensure the money is well spent. As I was looking at running for the board I wondered:

-- Why have we not slowly contracted out our bus service over the course of several years? Did anyone investigate if we could get the same service by contracting and at the same time save money?

-- Are we able to speed up a joint effort with the city to pool resources and jointly purchase health care insurance to save money?

-- Will the city be interested in using closing schools for their use? There are many options available: An updated police station and a new library are just two options that come to mind.

-- Does the fee (when appropriate) for use of facilities cover the carrying costs for that period (i.e. heat and electric)?

I believe I'm qualified and motivated. A quick Google search or search of the Concord Monitor web site will yield more of my writings and positions over the years. I urge voters to do just that - be informed.
Thanks Paul for touching base. If any other candidates would like to submit some information about their campaigns, fee free:

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