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
J-41 Eclipse MJ Casual Shoes, #WJ09ECL02, Brown/Gold, Womens US Size 7 , NIKE FLEX 2017 RUN ANTHRACITE PINK BLAST 898476 006 ATHLETIC WOMEN'S SIZE 6 WOB , Womens Sequins Flat Heels Running Shoes Retro Stars Sneakers Casual Athletic us7Nike Air Max Black size 6.5 usedASICS Gel Contend 2 Running Shoes, #T475N, Wht/Blu/Lime/Slvr, Women's US Size 11 , MERRELL SHOES JUNIORS WOMEN'S 6.5 CHAMELEON ARC JUNGLE MARY JANE PINK BROWN , Nike Gray Suede Athletic Shoes Women's 9Vintage 90s New Reebok Womens 5.5 Hyperlite Mid Nancy Kerrigan Athletic Shoes , Puma La Reina Casual Trainers, White/Green, Women's US Size 6Adidas Z-Traxion Women's White Soft Cleat Golf Shoes Size 8M , NIKE ROSHE JUVENATE 5.5Y or WMNS 6.5-7 ORANGE PINK NICE USED see pics-detailsNike Air Torch 4 Womens Size 10 Black Running Shoes Sneakers Pink SwooshNEW RUNNING TRAINERS WOMEN'S WALKING SHOCK ABSORBING SPORTS FASHION SHOES US7WOMEN'S NIKE AIR MAX REFRESH 2 SZ 8 Well Loved Pre-owned , Women's Black n Gold Shoes by "Adidas" - Size 7.5 , NIKE Swoosh Shoes Sz 6Y Womens White Leather with Pink Blue Lavender & Yellow , Women's Running Athletic Sport Shoes Outdoor Trainers Sneakers Breathable thboxsSkechers Highside Apex Casual Shoes, Brown/Black, Leather, Womens 8 , Women’s Nike Air Max Running Shoes Size 9 M Silver Pink 317004-060 Sneakers , Women Elegant Casual Flat Chinese Style Embroidered Cloth Shoes Soft Art SneakerNike Free 5.0 TR Women's Running Shoes Size 8 White Gray , Light Blue Patent Leather Nike Cortez 10 , Black US 8 New Women's Sneakers Sport Breathable Casual Running Outdoors Shoes , Women’s Printed Nike Shoes Size 8 , 2018 new cloth shoe ladies breathable flat bottom leisure sports single shoes , Skechers Size 9 8.5 Flex Appeal SOMETHING FUN CrossTrainers Sneakers Black MultiWOMENS NIKE FREE TR FIT 5 RUNNING TRAINING SHOES Size 8 , EUC GREY/SLATE BLUE WOMENS 5 1/2 M L.L. BEAN LOW TRAIL HIKING SHOES GORE TEXNew Balance 519 Running Shoes, #WX519WL, White/Blue/Silver, Women's US Size 10

“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.

New Women Qupid Strike-17X Leatherette Pointy Toe Perforated Mary Jane Flat , LifeStride Women’ Darcine Tan Slip On Comfort Flats Shoe - Size 7.5 NWB , Ballerinas Faux Suede Boat Flats womens velvet Shoes Vintage Dolly Elegant , Merrell Moc Jungle Primo Brown Leather Low Cut Slip on Loafers Womens Sz US 5.5Chaps Black Velvet Bronze Buckle Oxford Loafer Driving Shoes Size 10 , Easy Spirit Womens Devitt Leather Closed Toe Oxfords White Size 9.0 WeAD , Ellemenno Vtg Velour black flats w crystals 80s size 8Franco Sarto Womens Brenda Leather Closed Toe Loafers Black Leather Size 8.5 qRieker Women's Slip-ons Low Shoes Ballerina blue, 41358 New , VivoBarefoot Coral Ballet Flat Minimalist Travel Vegan Shoe Womens SIZE 38/ 7.5Dolce Vita Cooper Oxford - Women's Size 7.5 Beige SuedeVaneli Sport Attie Womens Rainbow Suede Slip On Flats Shoes Sz 8.5 Narrow Pink , New Balance Pens Size 10 White WW577WT Casual Walking Shoes F1-387Superga S001W00 White Multicolor Size 39 Canvas Sneakers Women 8 Men 6.5 , NIKE DUAL TENNIES FUSION TR PRINT BLUE/PINK TRAINING SHOES SZ 7,NWOB White MOUNTAIN OCTAVIA SLIP ON Peep Toe Womens US Sz 7.5 WIDE , RARE CONVERSE CUIR BLANCHES T 40 ABE A ACH IMM FP RED MOND RELAY A SAISIR , WOMENS black SHOES = AETREX = SIZE 8.5 NARROW E320W = ss14 , ARRAY Womens Freedom Leather Square Toe Loafers Black Size 7.0 OjOP , Nike MD Runner 2 Womens Running Shoes Sneakers Seafoam Aqua Swoosh Size 9.5 , Women's Wild Pair Green Suede Tennis Shoes Sneakers size 5.5 , MG35 Brooke Slip on Low Top Sneakers 878, White, 9 US , 02-2492 Asics GEL-Kayano 23 Black T6A5N.9678 WOMEN'S SIZE 9ASICS GT-2000 4 Blue - Womens - Size 6 BWhite Mountain Women's Crawford Thong Sandal Jute NubuckSalomon Women's XA Comp 3D Pearl Grey/Bordeaux/Hot Pink Trail Running Shoe 7.5MKENDALL + KYLIE Womens Brandy6 Low Top Bungee Fashion Sneakers, Black, Size 8.0 , Mizuno Wave Sky Light Blue Running Shoe Women's US 10.5 Eur 42 (I2,5)KIM&ZOZI Women's Murcia Fashion Sneaker Navy Size 9.0 , Adidas Originals Stan Smitn Women’s Shoes Size 7.5 New

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

Ecco Slip On Sneakers Up sz 6.5 21092 sz Red Leather Zip Up Womens Shoes 351 ad62c51 - thelocalrap.com

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

Ecco Slip On Sneakers Up sz 6.5 21092 sz Red Leather Zip Up Womens Shoes 351 ad62c51

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.