Education and the economy are among the top issues expressed by the three candidates seeking to serve District 59 in the Indiana House of Representatives.

Appearing on the Nov. 6 general election ballot are Republican Ryan Lauer, Democrat Dale Nowlin and Libertarian Clyde Myers, all of Columbus. The winner will fill the seat held by Milo Smith, a six-term lawmaker from Columbus who chose not to run for re-election.

District 59 encompasses Columbus, Taylorsville and in general areas west of State Road 7 in western and southern Bartholomew County.

Lauer, who ran against Smith and lost in the 2014 and 2016 Republican primaries, said it would be his highest honor to serve the people of Bartholomew County in public office.

Story continues below gallery
Mizuno Wave Inspire 6 Running Shoes Women’s Size 8 US Excellent Plus Conditionadidas Women's CF Daily QT Mid W Sneaker, Red Night/Purple, W Size 11 Medium USPuma Ignite Dual Evoknit - Pink - Womens , Nike Air Max Thea Women's Shoes (Size 12) Ember / Black / White 599409-802 , NIKE Women's Revolution 3 Black & silver 819303 015 Size 10.5baskets montante CONVERSE en cuir marron p 38,5 fr , 38 eur 5,5 uk super etat , MINT Asics Gel Cumulus 18 Women's Navy/Silver/Pink Running Shoes US 9.5 T6C8N A5NEUF ASH BLACK BORDEAUX CORAIL MODèLE ALEX POINTURE 41 VAL/ , NIKE AIR JORDAN XXXI BG SZ 7.0 -WOMENS SZ 8.5 [848629-004] , New Balance Women's WLZanteV2 Sneaker - Choose SZ/ColorRockport 10 Brown Suede Active Sneakers Walking Running XCS Gym Yoga NWOBSALOMON X MISSION 2 CITY TRAIL Women Green Purple Sneaker Shoe 7M Pre Owned , Nike Free Rn 2017 Le Women Shoes Size 9 New! , Nike Wmns Internationalist Mid LTHR Leather Black Women Shoes Sneaker 859549-001 , EUC WMNS NIKE FLYKNIT LUNAR 2 620658-010 BLACK-WHITE-PLATINUM US Sz 9New Balance NB 990 Women Shoes W990GL3 Sz 9 2A Running Walking Jogging TrainingCOOLWAY cheery Platform Sneaker Size 8 , [704695-006] NIKE FREE 5.0 TR FIT 5 PRT WMNS WOMENS SNEAKERS NIKEBLACK WHITE LAV , BRAND NEW Adidas Women's Mana Rc Bounce running sneakers shoe size 7.5Nike NikeCourt Air Zoom Ultra Hard Court Women's Sz 7.5 Tennis Shoe 845046 013Adidas Originals Wmns Superstar W Black Snake Print S76147 - BRAND NEW IN BOXBABOLAT DRIVE 3 ALL COURT NEW tennis shoes propulse storm drive 2 team v-proNew Balance Women's CUSH + 628 Casual Athletic Shoe , Woman’s Adidas Blue Red NMD Shoes R1 - Great Condition Size 8US , Nike Wmns Free 5.0 TR Fit 5 BRTHE Breathe Orange Women Training Shoes 718932-800 , Claetyn wood Vista Navy/White Slip on sneakers Women's size 40 Us 9.5/10 , Adidas XCS Women Spikeless Cross Country Running Shoe S76865 Black Pink Size 8.5Nike Air Max Womens Running Shoes white 2011 Size 9.5 , Puma Basket Heart Patent Womens Black Patent Leather Sneakers Shoes 8-$85 NWOB! ,

“I believe strongly in service to our community and making a positive difference for the lives of all Hoosiers,” Lauer said. “I will serve earnestly, honestly and with integrity seeking, seeking what is right, listening to the people and protecting our Constitutional rights.”

Nowlin, a math teacher at Columbus North High School since 1985, said as he became involved with issues in downtown Columbus, he saw that his efforts could have a positive impact on his community.

This is his second attempt to win the District 59 seat. Nowlin mounted his first campaign for the seat in 2016, losing to Democrat Bob Pitman in the primary.

“As an educator, I knew we could do more to support and improve our schools,” Nowlin said. “I decided to use my people skills, my understanding of data and my expertise in education to serve our wider community.”

Myers said he was motivated to run for office since he contends that Indiana lacks no champions for businesses.

“Republicans and Democrats continue to move the goalposts on businesses and individuals trying to work in our state,” he said. “They pass legislation without any analysis for unintended consequences. I want to legislate using facts, data, reason, logic and principle, not emotion, opinion or party bias.”

The Alliance for a Healthier Indiana is lobbying to increase the statewide tax on cigarettes — currently 99.5 cents a pack, set in 2007 — by $1.50 a pack in hopes of reducing smoking among Hoosiers and trimming long-term healthcare costs.

However, all three candidates said they are opposed to increasing the cigarette excise tax at that level.

Nowlin said he doesn’t support an increase of that magnitude, noting that Indiana has one of the highest smoking rates in the nation.

DIANE'S ESSENTAILS SHOES WOMENS SIZE 8 1/2 M , Cabin Creek RED SHOES WOMEN'S SIZE 9 M , Rocket Dog Women's Dover Everlong Cord Cotton OxfordAJ Valenci Brown Patent Chain Detail Skimmer Loafers , Vineyard Vines Women's Green Goat Leather Ballet Flat , EASTLAND ROSY WOMENS LEATHER BOAT SHOES BLUE 7.5 MWomens CLARKS ARTISAN Tan Leather Tassel Clogs Mules Block Heels Shoes sz 7 M , BOC Born Black Suede Leaher Loafers Flats Shoes Women's 7 38 , Bass Weejun Calliope Womens 10 M Brown Leather Slip On Loafer Braided StrapWomen's Chinese Ethnic Embroidery Flat Elevator Cheongsam Dress Shoes BambooLands' End Slip On Casual Moc Loafers Women's Size 7 BWalking Cradles Women's Ante Flat, Black Leather, 6 2W US , Vionic 359CABAL TNLP095 Womens Gem Caballo Ballet Flat (TanLeopard , Women's Skechers - Glider- ELECTRICITY - Black/White - New! , Rockport Womens Adelyn Ghillie Leather Pointed Toe Ballet FlatsWomen's NIKE COURT MO4 Running Training Athletic Shoes Sneaker US7.5 UK5 EUR38.5REEBOK DMX Shear Running Womens Size 10Merrell J178605C Women's Performance Walking Pull-on Shoes Black size 7 M , Women's Divided H& M Floral slip on sneakers size 8* , Pony - Women's White/Tan Mary Jane Sneakers Size 9.5 9.5M - New in Box - Vickie , Brooks 7 White Leather Sneakers Walking Running Shoes Women's Size 9Saucony Guide 8 Gray Orange Running Shoes Women Size 9.5 Wide SH6 , PUMA Women's Vikky Platform Ribbon Sneaker , New Balance Women's Procourt State Fair PackLifestyle ShoeNEW MADDEN GIRL ADORREE NAVY SNEAKER SHOES WOMENS 6.5 FREE SHIP! , Women's Converse Breakpoint Pro Leather-suede Sneakers Black Sizes NIB , Nike Air Max Tailwind 7 Women's Running Shoes Size 9 Fuchsia/Hot Lava 683635-502 , Women's Keen Brown And Black Leather Hiking Shoes Size 10 EUCMISMATCHED L5 R7.5 Propet Washable Walker W3841 DENIM BLUE Suede Athletic Shoes , New Womens Nike Mercurial Blue White Soccer Cleats Shoes Sz.8.5 EU.40 ,

Nearly 25 percent of Hoosier adults smoke, compared with 17 percent nationally.

“Indiana’s cigarette tax would be higher than any surrounding state, resulting in other economic consequences,” Nowlin said. “I would not support any increase unless all new revenue went towards smoking prevention and support for those trying to quit smoking.”

Lauer cited information from the Centers from the Disease Control and Prevention that indicated most smokers are under or near the poverty level.

“Raising this tax will have a disproportionately negative effect on lower-income Hoosiers,” Lauer said. “Attempting to change people’s behaviors and addictions by raising taxes is ill-conceived and will hurt our citizens with lower incomes.”

Myers agreed, referring to the cigarette tax as nothing more than a tax on poor people.

“It’s insulting to people who are already struggling to kick them down. No, I do not support a cigarette tax nor excise taxes of any kind,” Myers said.

The three candidates also offered their perspectives on different topics.

Q: Identify three priorities for the next legislative session and why have you chosen them?

Lauer: “Attack the opioid and methamphetamine epidemic by increasing enforcement, awareness and treatment options. We are all affected by this scourge and too many children and families have suffered. Reform the Department of Child Services. Serious issues have been identified at DCS failing our most vulnerable children who must be protected. Expand school choice with education savings accounts for all children and allow more local control of education by letting teachers teach again.”

Nowlin: “Indiana can be a welcoming state with a thriving, sustainable economy. That requires a well-educated workforce. We can grow that workforce by investing in Hoosiers and by creating a quality of life that will attract newcomers. That means we must fix the Indiana Department of Child Services, support and improve our education system and support local communities as they work to overcome the opioid epidemic.”

Myers: “Business — The Indiana General Assembly consistently props up some businesses and industries, while simultaneously putting roadblocks in front of others. If we want good jobs in this state, we need to legalize work and let people earn their own living without a mountain of bureaucracy in their way. Education — Many seem to think that the more money spent on education, the better. We may indeed need more money for education, but that isn’t the only factor. There are other states performing significantly better without many more resources. We need to implement what works, not just throw money at problems. Personal liberty — I am the only candidate running that doesn’t think that he knows better than you how you should run your life. I think you own yourself, your body, your property, your business, your relationships, your self-defense. No one else should decide how you should live, so long as you aren’t hurting anyone else.”

Q: What is your stance on Indiana enacting a hate crime law and explain why you feel that way?

Lauer: “Judges today under current law have wide latitude to increase penalties for crimes with hateful motives and should do so. I support harsher penalties for violent crimes and heroin and meth dealers who are killing people. All violence is hateful and motive should be considered in sentencing, but hate-crimes proposals do not cover all biases and hate.”

Nowlin: “I believe Indiana should pass a hate crime law. It would send a message that all people are welcomed and valued. That is a message for members of minority groups in Indiana and people outside of Indiana, who might be considering making Indiana their home. It is the right thing to do and it would provide more quality candidates for Hoosier companies.”

Myers: “I wish things were so simple that we could just legislate away hatred and bigotry. I would be in favor of legislation that has undergone a thorough analysis to protect against it backfiring and hurting those it is designed to protect and does not infringe on constitutionally protected freedoms.”

Ryan Lauer

Name: Ryan Lauer

Age: 41

Current office held: None

Previous offices held: Bartholomew County Council, elected in 2010, president in 2014

Education: Bachelor of Science in biochemistry, Indiana University

Saucony Womens Triumph Iso 26493 Shoes 3 White/Teal/Citron Running Womens Shoes Size 9.5 (16669) effcfcd -

Community: President of Grace Lutheran Church Council and Congregation, Grace Lutheran church member, sheriff’s merit board member, Community Corrections advisory board member, co-founder of “Save Eos,” co-chair of Uncommon Cause 2012, Columbus Philharmonic violinist, computer and data processing board member, Minds on Math mentor at CSA-Lincoln, Columbus Arts District retail committee

Family: Wife Blair, daughters Awyn and Lillian and son Isaac

Dale Nowlin

Name: Dale Nowlin

Age: 64

Current office held: None

Previous offices held: None

Education: Bachelor’s degree in mathematics and psychology from Alma College, master’s degree in mathematics from Michigan State University

Community: Teacher and math department chair at Columbus North High School and Northside Middle School, sponsor of the Columbus North Environmental Club, Historic Downtown Neighborhood Alliance Steering Committee, member of the Downtown Working Group, First Presbyterian Church Elder and chair of the Adult Fellowship and Education Committee, Ivy Tech Columbus Advisory Board member, former president of the Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics, former volunteer for Campus Life/Youth for Christ

Family: Wife Isabel, three grown children, Elisabeth, Joel and Matthew.

Clyde Myers

Name: Clyde Myers

Age: 41

Saucony Womens Triumph Iso 26493 Shoes 3 White/Teal/Citron Running Womens Shoes Size 9.5 (16669) effcfcd

Current office held: None

Previous offices held: None

Education: Associate degree in computer networking from Ivy Tech, 1995 graduate of Columbus North High School

Athletic Shoes

Family: Wife Amy, daughters Margaret and Olivia

Coming Monday

Meet the candidates for Indiana House District 69: Republican incumbent Jim Lucas and Democrat Steve Schoettmer.