House District 4 - Jim Sackett

(Photo Courtesy Jim Sackett)

Name: Jim Sackett

District: House District 4

Area: Fairbanks

Party Affiliation: Republican

Where were you born? Minnesota

If you weren't born in Alaska, when did you come here? 1970

Age on election day: 55

If you've attended college, which schools did you attend? What's your highest degree achieved?
UAF in 1991 Bachelors in Business Administration, UAF in 2000 Masters in Business Administration, DTS (online) Masters in Theology.

What is or was your main career?
Business owner, Public school teacher, CEO, & Carpenter

If you've held or run for public office before, which one(s)?
N/A

If you have a spouse or significant other whom you live with, what is their name?
Cheryl Sackett

If you have children, what are their first names and ages?
Sarah Sackett, 26 & Tim Sackett, 23

Why are you running for office?
Alaska is a special place and I want it to remain that way and I don't want it to look like California in 5 years.

What are the most important issues facing Alaska?
Our budget deficit, high energy costs, high health care costs, education, reducing crime, erosion of lands access, and mounting deferred maintenance of state infrastructure.

What would you do to reduce crime in Alaska?
We need more state troopers, particularly in rural areas. It would be nice to have some more reform options available to those who need/want it in the prison system. Which would hopefully keep first time offenders from turning into hardened criminals. That has to be balanced with tougher sentences as a deterrent so we convey the message that crime doesn't pay in Alaska. Let's offer both a carrot and a stick.

Should dividends be paid under the original dividend formula?
Yes.

Should Permanent Fund earnings be used to pay for state government? How much?
If our legislature is unable to control spending then the money has to come from somewhere. I'd prefer to increase the oil production and throughput in the pipeline to increase revenues. If we can bring the Willow, Pikka, & Horseshoe oil fields online at today's prices the problem goes away with virtually no risk to the state, all while providing good paying jobs.

What, if anything would you cut from the budget?
There is never an easy cut to the budget, but we cannot continue to spend more than we earn and hope the problem goes away. Hard decisions will have to be made after reviewing where there is fat to trim. It's my understanding that we spend about the same amount of money on our highway systems that 90% of Alaskans use as we do on the ferry system that 10% of Alaskans use.

Should Alaska have new or increased taxes? What would you suggest?
No.

Have humans contributed to climate change, and if so, does the state bear any responsibility to undo some of the effects?
Possibly, but not to the degree that nature does/has. The glaciers started melting 10,000 years ago and the combustible engine was invented about 100 years ago. We have an obligation to steward the planet the best we can and should use our knowledge and technology to do that to the best of our abilities while balancing our need for transportation, industry, and heating in society.

Do you agree or disagree with Gov. Walker's decision to expand Medicaid in 2014? How much do you believe that decision cost the state treasury?
Disagree, able bodied persons should be working if they are able, and the state's portion of costs is going to increase over time. The numbers vary depending on who you talk too or which report or forecast you read, but all agree it will be expensive.