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
WANTED, LINCOLN FASHION SNEAKER, CORAL, WOMENS, US 6M, NEW W/ DEFECT W/O BOX. , NEW BALANCE WOMENS 574 FRESH FOAM WFL574AW TEAL AQUARIUS WHITE US 7 , NEW Nike Air Zoom 90 IT Golf Cleats Rory Mcilory 844648 001 Women’s Size 7.5 , Brussels Griffon Pink White Print Running Shoes For Women-Free Shipping , Asolo Women's Ember Low Hiking Light Grey/Antracite Shoe 8MCONVERSE Shoes 491880 Blue 22.5cmSkechers Synergy Elite Status Women's Running Shoe 11798/WHT Size 6.5 , Kelly Flynn-Cat Running Shoes For Women-Free ShippingLIU JO shoes sneakers perfect leather gray woman $155 , Under Armour Micro G Fuel RN Women's Running Sneakers 1285487 005 Size 6Dutch Shepherd Print (Black/White) Running Shoes For Women-Free ShippingRoborovski Hamster (Black/White) Running Shoes For Women-Free Shipping , Printed Women's Running shoes- Free Shipping , Guess Gold Signature Shoes Womens 8.5 , West Highland White Terrier On Deep Skyblue Print Sneakers For Women- Free ShippBiewer Terrier Running Shoe For Women- Free ShippingEntlebucher Mountain Dog Print Slip Ons For Women- Express ShippingWhite labradoodle Running Shoe For Women- Free ShippingGolden Hamster Print (Black/White) Running Shoes For Women-Free Shipping , Drentse Patrijshond Dog Print Slip Ons For Women-Express Shipping , 1804 adidas EEZAY FLIP-FLOPS Women's Thong Sandals CG3556*New Womens adidas adiZero F30 TRX FG Cleats Silver/Pink/White MSRP $105 , Braque du Bourbonnais Dog Print Slip Ons For Women-Express ShippingLabrador-Dog Running Shoes For Women-Free Shipping , Hog Pig Running Shoes For Women-Free Shipping , Asics Gel-Motion WMNS US 11.5 $59 NEW SALE , ASICS Womens Zaraca 4 Mosaic Blue Pink Glow Onyx Running Sneakers US 9 NEW! , PUMA Suede Heart Quilted Women's Olive/Marshmallow/Metallic Cameo Brown 36546203 , Nike Air Force XXV 315087-104 Blue White Black Shoes ,

“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.

Clarks size 7M Clogs Black Leather ShoesBorn Ivory Suede ballet flat Driving Moccasin SZ 7 M , Women Leopard Suede Pointy Toe Loafer Flat Slip On Casual Comfy Flats Shoes , DKNY Donna Karan Women's 7.5 M Black Stretch Wedge Heel Loafer$75 size 6.5 w Aerosoles Drive Through Black Loafers Flats Slip On Womens Shoes , Women’s B.O.C. Karley Clog Slip On Size 9 M Black Oil Leather Casual C35300 GUC , Keds Canvas Shoes High Heel Strap Solid Tan Pink Size 6 (D5)BORN COGNAC BROWN OXFORDS WOMEN SIZE 7 MSteven By Steve Madden Womens Aidan Slip On Loafer Shoes, Taupe Suede, US 7Sofwear Women's Slip On Shoes 10W PU Upper Red/White/Blue Patriotic/4th of July , NEW NIKE TIEMPO MYSTIC IV FG LEATHER 454118-016 WOMEN'S FOOTBALL SOCCER CLEATS 7Women's Non-slip Outdoor Climbers Athletic Shoes Travel Walking Low-Cut Boots , Mephisto Women's White Leather Mary Jane Shoes Size 7.5 (TACO600 , Stephane Verdino Paris black woman's flats size 38/8NEW! Skechers 13590 Womens GoWalk Slip-On Black 6.5 417F as , SKETCHERS Shape-Ups Women' White Silver Walking Fitness Shoes (Size 7)Comfortview Women's size 9W silver and gray Sneakers 9W , Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Womens girls sz 5.5 Wool Winter Knit HighTop ShoeCONVERSE ALL STAR WOMENS SHOES SNEAKERS WOMENS SIZE 10.5 10 1/2 PINK HI TOP , NEW SKECHERS WOMENS RELAXED FIT REGGAE FEST DORY SNEAKERNew Balance WPACEPJ2 Vazee Pace V2 Athletic Shoes - Women's Size 11 B, BlackSkechers Sport Women's Just Relax Fashion Sneaker , Ellen Degeneres Black Leather & Textile Casie Fashion Sneaker Women Size US 8.5MSkechers Performance 14260 Womens Go Flex Rely Flip Flop- Choose SZ/Color.New Balance 580 Lost Worlds Women's Running Shoes WRT580LB Red Gold NIBPuma Basket Platform Patent Halogen Blue Women's Size 9.5 Shoes 363314-01 NewREEBOK WOMEN CLASSIC PRINCESS White CN2212NIB G by Guess FAX 2 Women Shoes Round Toe Synthetic Leather Sneakers Blue Sz 5Women's 12 Asics Gel Inspire 2 White Silver Cushioning Athletic Cheer ShoesMerrell Women's Jungle Moc Waterproof Hiking Shoes, Black - Size 5.5

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

Golden Retriever Golden For Christmas Running Shoes For Women- Free Free Shipping 0186869 -

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

Golden Retriever Golden For Christmas Running Shoes For Women- Free Free Shipping 0186869

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.