Government

Joe Oclon, candidate for Iowa House District 58

Joe Oclon
Joe Oclon

House District 58 covers Jackson County and parts of Jones and Dubuque counties.

Name: Joe Oclon

Party: Democrat

Residence: Maquoketa

Age: 39

Occupation: Carpenter

Education: Some college

Website: facebook.com/VoteJoeForIowa

What are the three most important issues facing Iowans, and how would you address them?

Low wages and lack of access to health care. Gradually raise Iowa’s minimum wage to $11 per hour. Unionize every company with 50 or more employees. Teach relevant job skills in high school. Teach work ethics in school. Two-year community college for those students who can make the grade. Switch the tax burden from the middle class to the ultra rich. Repeal managed care and focus on people. More care for mental illness. Create a public insurance option.

Do you believe the state should increase the minimum wage? If yes, to what level?

Yes. We should gradually raise the minimum wage in Iowa to $11 per hour at the rate of adding $1 per year.

Would you vote to roll back the state income tax cuts passed last session? Would you expand them?

I would increase taxes on the rich and make tax cuts permanent for the middle class and poor. I will not raise taxes on people making under $100,000 per year.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

Would you vote to end or phase out the property tax “backfill” for local governments?

I am against raising property taxes or any increase in taxes on the middle class. I would extend the property tax backfill to local governments because it helps to keep property taxes low.

Would you vote to ban automated traffic cameras/enforcement devices? If no, would you favor bringing them under state regulation?

Traffic cameras are an overreach. We should be focused on major crimes, not harassing people on the way to work. I like cameras because sometimes they can catch violent criminals and thieves, but I don’t think the government should be able to send you a fine in the mail that you cannot defend yourself against.

Would you vote to expand Iowa’s current medical cannabis law? Legalize marijuana?

I do not see any legitimate reason to keep marijuana illegal, but it is a decision that should be left to the federal government. If the bill came before me, I would vote to legalize marijuana, but it is not something that I will fight for. Nobody should be imprisoned just for smoking marijuana.

Should Iowa amend the state Constitution to protect the right to bear arms beyond current language? Would you support a “constitutional carry” change to Iowa’s firearm permit system that would significantly expand gun rights?

I think Iowa’s gun laws are fine as they are. I would not expand or reduce them. I am against changing the constitution, just to protect firearms.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

Thank you for signing up for our e-newsletter!

You should start receiving the e-newsletters within a couple days.

Would you support giving counties local control to regulate livestock facilities? Would you favor a moratorium on new large CAFO construction?

We all live in the same environment and we need to regulate the environment as a state and as a country. The future depends on it. If CAFOs cannot figure out how to become environmentally friendly then there should be a moratorium, however, I think they should be given a reasonable amount of time to figure out how to fix the problems that they cause to the environment. I am not unreasonable.

What are your thoughts on increasing funding for public education? Would you vote to extend 1-cent SAVE sales tax for school infrastructure until 2049?

Children are our future. I would increase funding for public education so that we all share in funding education. Forcing communities to raise property taxes for schools is wrong. I am against any new taxes on the middle class, so I am against a 1-cent sales tax. Instead the tax burden should be on the ultra rich.

Would you expand or repeal Iowa’s law barring doctors from performing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected?

I would repeal Iowa’s law barring doctors from performing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. Every abortion breaks my heart, but the choice to have an abortion or not is up to the woman, not lawmakers.

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.

CONTINUE READING

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.