Steve Olson

Party: Republican

Age: 59

Residence: DeWitt

Occupation: Farmer

Political experience: Two terms in Iowa House of Representatives; Assistant Majority Leader of the Iowa House; served on the Administration and Rules, Agriculture, Environmental, Economic Growth and Transportation committees

Education: Graduate of Calamus High School; attended Iowa State University; Iowa National Air National Guard Air Traffic Controller

Family: Wife Eunice; two married children; three grandchildren.

What are the three most important issues in this race?


Health care

Job opportunities

What is your approach to these issues?

Funding needs to get to the classroom, preparing our children for the workplace, especially in math and science, as well as rewarding classroom teachers.

The Legislature has increased funding for Medicaid providers by 6 percent. I have supported efforts of small business employers pooling health coverage to lower costs. Tort reform to limit frivolous liability insurance claims would be beneficial to the health industry.

I sponsored and floor managed the Iowa Renewable Fuels Legislation, creating jobs for Iowans. We can do more to see employment opportunities grow; we need to stabilize the property tax on commercial and industrial property, to encourage business to develop and stay in Iowa.

It is very difficult to choose “three important issues.” The environment, public safety, transportation, etc., are also high on the “important” list.

How do you differ from your opponent?

I am asking for the support of the voters of voters in the 83rd House District to be able to continue to represent the needs of the residents of the district, using my past four years experience to support their public safety needs, funding for water treatments and all of their concerns in general. I pledge to offer “Leadership With Integrity.” I encourage people to contact me with their questions and concerns and promise to do the best I can to address issues that are important to them.

Reg Kauffman

Party: Democrat

Age: 64

Residence: Calamus

Occupation: Retired carpenter

Political experience: None

Education: High school/four years apprentice school

Family: Wife, three children, six grandchildren

Web site:

What are the three most important issues in this race?

1. Education

2. Jobs

3. Minimum wage

What is your approach to these issues?

The most important gifts you can give a child are parental guidance and a good education. Iowa needs to support our teachers with better legislation. We are losing our best and brightest teachers to other states because of Iowa’s low teacher salaries. If we don’t fix this problem Iowa will fall behind the nation in quality education. Iowa also needs to find funding for programs such as remedial assistance so our young people who are having learning problems in school will get extra help. Iowa also needs to restore the work-study program for community college and university students.

Iowa needs good paying jobs. I am optimistic for Iowa’s future. I want to see the nation’s first biorefinery built in Iowa for the next generation of ethanol, these industries create jobs.

To man these jobs, Iowa needs legislation to expand job training programs, especially in the high-tech fields, and also training for our young people and our unemployed workers. We need to equip them with the skills to handle the many new jobs coming to Iowa.

3. I am in favor of raising the minimum wage to $7.15 to $7.50 an hour. I have personally met hard-working Iowans who work for minimum wage. Some of these people work two or three jobs to make ends meet. Families living on minimum wage have difficulties providing for their children. Iowa needs to raise their wages.

How do you differ from your opponent?

I do have an agenda. Steve Olson said, and I quote, “I don’t have an agenda when I go out there and represent the people. (Source: the DeWitt Observer, Oct. 14, 2006.) I will work hard for District 83 and I will not be led to vote for legislation that is not in the best interest of District 83 or Iowa.