Rome News Tribune: Q&A with Katie Dempsey
About 60% of Floyd County voters are in state House District 13. It covers all of Rome, the Silver Creek community and points east.
Republicans Brad Barnes and Luke Martin are challenging incumbent Katie Dempsey. There are no Democrats seeking the seat so the winner of the May 24 primary will be unopposed in November.
The candidates were each sent several questions about their qualifications and how they would govern in the Georgia General Assembly. Their responses will be published as they are returned.
Dempsey, a former small business owner, was first elected in 2006. More about her platform is available at VoteKatieDempsey.com.
What makes you the best candidate to represent the district in the Georgia House?
I have always put the City of Rome and Floyd County first. I am the only candidate in the race that is a lifelong Republican, the only candidate to be endorsed by the National Rifle Association, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, and the Georgia Life Alliance. My commitment to service, a conservative voting record, and ethical leadership matter.
I currently serve as the chairman of the Appropriations Human Resources Committee as well as a member of the committees on Economic Development & Tourism; Energy, Utilities & Telecommunications; Health & Human Services; Higher Education; Transportation; and Rules.
In addition to my legislative work, I serve on the Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities Council, Georgia Children’s Cabinet, and Georgia Foundation for Early Care + Learning Board. I previously served on the Rome Floyd Planning Commission for 15 years as well as a member of the Rome City Commission.
The only thing the Legislature is required to do is pass a budget. What are your budget priorities?
Making sure that Georgia remains the No. 1 State to Do Business is my primary goal. Georgia’s Constitution requires that the legislature pass a balanced budget and it is important that we continue to do so while investing in needs that will keep our state a great place to live, work, and play.
I will remain focused on education, child advocacy, mental health, senior and veterans’ services, as well as workforce development to support recruitment and retention in education, healthcare, and law enforcement.
It appears that Roe v Wade will be overturned, throwing the abortion issue back to the states. What should the Legislature do?
I am honored to have received the Georgia Life Alliance Certification and I was a proud supporter of the Heartbeat Bill. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it would mean that Georgia’s Heartbeat Bill would immediately be upheld.
The legislature will need to be deliberative in our next steps. I believe that life begins at conception and that we need to continue focusing on making Georgia a safe place to raise a child. Healthy mothers and children are imperative for our quality of life and the future success of our State.
Housing and healthcare are major considerations in households planning for the future. What can/should the state do to make them more affordable?
I helped craft and support multiple measures this session to alleviate the pressure from Biden’s inflation by freezing the state gas tax and cutting income taxes for all hardworking Georgians. We also delivered a historic one-time tax return to all Georgia taxpayers and reduced taxes on military retiree pay, helping to ensure that more veterans make Georgia their permanent home.
I am committed to working to overcome barriers to access safe housing and increase employability. We must continue to promote wellness incentives, and increase educational options for additional doctors, nurses, and support staff. It is imperative that we increase access to timely care while decreasing the costs of healthcare in our state.