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
Northside Frosty Snow Boot SIZE 5 Kids USA (I) , Asics Gel 1160 T0J8N Womens Sz7.5 Athletic RunningCrossFit Training Sneakers-290Saucony Xodus 5.0 GTX Women's Black/Purple Trail Running Shoe 11MDolce Vita Black Women's Shoes Bruno Studded Knit Slip-On Sneakers Size 7.5 $120New Balance Womens Size 11 () White Blue Walkers WW846WBASICS T397N GEL-VENTURE 4 RUNNING SHOE Women’s Size 9.5 , VANS Authentic Kendra Dandy I Scream for Ice Cream Shoes Womens Size 5.5 NIB , Nike ladies 8 Nike Free TR FIT athletic shoesWomen's Asics GT-1000 Titanium Iris Turquoise Running Shoes T2L6N sz 9.5 , WOMENS ASICS GEL VENTURE 5 SHOES SZ 8 M , Aetrex Apex Shoes 532 Runner Womens Size 6 Wide poMerrell Siren Sport Gore Tex XCR Women's Trail Hiking Shoes Brindle Size-82013 Nike Dart 10 Womens Running Shoes, 580427-100, White/Pink, US 6.5 Eur 37.5 , Material Girl Womens Extra Low Top Slip On Fashion, Gold Metallic, Size 7.5 voFy , New Balance 811 White Walking Shoes Breast Cancer Edition Sz 8 B USASAUCONY EXCURSION TR 10 Gray Orange Trail Running Shoes Women's Size 11 S15301-1 , Salvatore Ferragamo Brown Suede Women's Shoes Size 7 1/2 C Made in ItalyHelen's Heart Women's Bronze Athletic Shoes - (CFW-S023)Mark Nason Los Angeles Women's Jett Sneaker, Burgundy, Size 9.5 , CONVERSE CHUCK TAYLOR ALL STAR OX 651700C ASH GREY TRAINERSSPRING COURT Women's G2 Lo Cut Violet Purple Canvas Sneakers Shoes US 6 / 37 NEWSkechers Shape Ups Fitness Toning Shoes 11800 All White Women's 8.5Merrell Chameleon Ventilator Low Gray Trail Hiking Shoes Women's Size: 7Saucony Grid Cohesion 7 Women's Running Shoes Silver/Pink Size-10 , Women's Nike Lunarglide+ Platinum Grey Metallic Summit Running 366645-018 sz 8.5Nike LunarGlide 2 Fly Wire 407647 060 women's 8 Grey OrangeWomen shoes white shoes 2017 New Arrivals fashion Breathable mesh casual shoes wWomen's NIKE Meadow '16 TXT Tennis Casual Shoes 833674-161 SZ 7 WHT/HYPER CORALWomen's Asics GT 2000 2 Grey Orchid Running Shoes T3Q6N sz 7 2A ,

“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.

Women's Indigo by Clarks 64481 Ballet Flats Shoes Size 6.5M Yellow Leather S14 , SPERRY TOP-SIDER Women's 'Bluefish' Suede 2-Eye Boat Shoe ~ Blue ~ Sz 10 MISOTONER $54 WHITE COMFY Velour Faux Fur Mules Slippers Shoes 7.5 - 8 NWT , Steve Madden Women's Syruss Flat Sandal Pink Size 9.5M , Indian Handmade Ethnic Yellow Women's Ballerina Mirror Work Traditional Mojari , Pritzi brand women's Holiday flats, 7 M, fabric uppers, 1/2 " heel (6.5 M ?) , Keen Womens Sz 7 Eu 37.5 Leather Brown Oxfords Sneakers Very Nice Condition , Natural Soul GRACEE Black Smooth Loafer Women Shoes Size 11 M AL4638Adrianna Papell Womens Penny Wedge Sandals Shoes Ivory Size 10 New , GB35 Parisaa Flat Slip-On Comofort Shoes, Midnight, 5 USKlogs Kennie Womens Polyurethane Clogs Display Model Shoes Navy 14 M , Hotter Comfort Concept Idyllic Silver/Pewter Low Heel Slip On Pumps Women's 7M , Boden Ballet Flats Size 36 5.5 Silver Purple Bow Trim Round Toe Leather Slip On , Croft & Barrow Charity Mule, Deep Red, Leather, Women's US Size 9.5KLOGS CLOGS BAMBI WOMEN'S DISPLAY MODEL SHOES BLACK WIGWAM 9.5 MNew Womens Walking Fitness Shape Ups Shoe Platform Wedge Creeper Sneaker Slip onSaucony Womens Kilkenny XC Racking Shoe Grey Slime Pink Size 12 S19022Saucony Spitfire 4 Running Shoes, Women's Size 8, Silver/Pink , PAIRE DE CHAUSSONS? NEUFS TRICOTéS FAITS MAIN VERTS A DAMIERGirls Cute New Balance NB Pink Black Running Jogging Shoe Sneaker 5 K2750BPY EUC , Girls Womens Inner Heighten Shoes Casual Slipsole Slip on Fashion Flatform Shoes , Hot Womens Breathable Wedge Increase Hollow Out Fashion Sports Casual Shoes A247adidas NEO Women's Lite Racer Slip On Casual Sneaker Black/White SZ 7.5 F98974 , Women's Trotters Basketweave Oxford Shoes Outlet Store FlatsNaturalizer Women's Motley Sneaker, Black, Size 11.0 , NEW BALANCE WOMEN WL574MOX CLASSICS RUNNING SNEAKERS , Converse x pendleton wool plaid high tops leather trim blue red womens size 9 40 , Clarks Wave Wheel Womens Casual Athletic Walking Shoes Size 9 Brown NubuckNew Balance WW577 Sneaker- Women's Size 9 B, BlackRARE?? Nike Flyknit Lunar One+ Pink Flash Black Fireberry Volt 6.5 554888-606

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

Qupid Black/White Sneaker Women's Mitch-01 6818 Fashion Sneaker Black/White Size 7.5 efa865b -

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

Qupid Black/White Sneaker Women's Mitch-01 6818 Fashion Sneaker Black/White Size 7.5 efa865b

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.