Editor’s note: In preparation for the May 8 Primary, the Urbana Daily Citizen is profiling each candidate seeking the Republican nomination for the Ohio House of Representatives 85th District. Each candidate was queried on topics that affect the residents of the district. Candidates profiled are Rochiel Foulk on April 4; Justin Griffis on April 5; Joe Ratermann on April 6; and Nino Vitale on April 7.
URBANA – Rochiel Foulk is one of four candidates vying for the Republican nomination for the Ohio House of Representatives 85th district.
A native of Urbana, Foulk graduated from Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree and Capital University Law School with a paralegal certificate.
Foulk studied copyright law at Capital; did graduate work in American government at Harvard University; studied law enforcement, Spanish, immigration law and finance at Columbus State Community College and communication and health care sciences at Urbana University.
Foulk has worked 15-plus years as a healthcare administrator, surgical tech at Grant Hospital, owned two retail businesses including national online sales, taught French, volunteer-programmed websites for the Champaign County Fair, Historical Society and Barn Tour, among others.
Foulk is a member of Daughters of the American Revolution, the National Rifle Association and the Ohio Farm Bureau. She owns a small farm and attends Our Saviour Episcopal Church where she is on the vestry.
How should school security be addressed with the rising tide of gun incidents in public schools? Does the state have a role in this?
“The state has a role in requiring the establishment of minimum statewide safety standards and adequate funding for such items as ensuring for locks on the insides of the classroom doors and that there is a specific safety plan in place, however, the state should not override local control. What one district superintendent might want might not be what another superintendent would need.
“Local administrators have the best sense of what their district’s needs are. It should be up to the local districts to decide if they want to allow current conceal carry holders and/or armed guards in the school as part of their security plans. And, the local districts should be able to look to the state as a resource for security training guidelines to help them put together their own specific plans.”
Do you think the current concerns of mayors and other local officials regarding the reductions to Local Government Funds are valid ones?
“It would depend on what state assisted local government funding reductions the mayors and local officials would be talking about. If the concerns about state funding of local government were related to daily living needs, such as law enforcement, water, sewer, public safety, and other basic services, a concern over reduction in funding would be a legitimate concern. However, the further away from essential services they become, such as would be for recreational activities, non-essential to daily living, the lesser the legitimacy of the concerns over funding would be.”
What can lawmakers at the state level do to help combat the opioid crisis? Is this a problem of over-prescribing physicians or a problem with foreign-sourced drugs in rehab settings to help wean addicts? And, to what extent should the state government help fund any of this?
“The state should ensure that there is adequate funding for the enforcement of stiff penalties for drug dealers arrested in our state, to curb the influx and manufacture of drugs. If dealers know that Ohio is tough on drug crime, I believe that they will think twice.
“Also, there needs to be a system of control over pharmaceutical company’s marketing and pressuring for the prescribing of narcotics, which is part of the problem. In addition, there needs to be an effective plan to deal with the addict patients and their families, to increase the efficacy of any attempts therein to resolve the problem that we already have, and which should include comprehensive mental health and rehab services made available to those in need, regardless of their ability to pay.
“Foreign-sourced drugs in our local rehab settings to help wean addicts, is just changing drug pushers from illegal to legal. I don’t believe that trading one addictive drug for another, cures the problem, and the issue of foreign-sourced drug supplier’s needs to be addressed. Our end goal should be that of getting our people completely clean of addictive drugs, period.”
Do you favor completely outlawing surgical abortion access in Ohio? Why? What about access to pharmaceutical / chemical abortion?
“No. I believe in the exception of abortion in cases of rape, incest and when the life of the mother is endangered, and I don’t believe that government should be dictating our decisions about these very personal and private family matters.
“I don’t believe that government should be outlawing access to pharmaceutical/chemical abortion, for the same reasons as stated above.”
How can the state work with locals to retain college graduates in Ohio with new businesses, jobs and entertainment opportunities? And, how do we attract people from outside Ohio to settle here to fill the vacancies at industries that currently go unfilled?
“The state can enable the retention of our college graduates by making it easier for private sector businesses to flourish, with the offering of tax incentives and removing of burdensome small business regulations. Growing the business environment, will expand college graduate job opportunities. State encouraged business centered school internships and partnerships would also likely root the beginnings of young local families.
“The question should be, how do we get Buckeyes to fill those jobs. We want to make sure that our citizens, already living here, get to take advantage of those opportunities by training the younger generation and retraining those that are older so that they can continue to contribute and thrive as productive citizens with a purpose.”
Do you favor work requirements for able-bodied Medicaid recipients?
Do you support expanding Ohio’s renewable energy favorability to companies like wind and solar developers, or do you think such projects are an unnecessary threat to property values of nearby uncompensated residents?
“I am in favor of cheap energy, regardless of the source as long as it doesn’t cause harm to or bother anyone. Further discussion would have to incorporate the interests of the people who have no recourse to rid themselves of the broken remains of massive, structures no longer in use, once the lifespan of the windmills is complete, and the land owners who would be affected.
“With, the importance of preserving Ohio’s aesthetic landscapes and the threat of ruining this historically valued asset, it would be important to represent what the voters would want, and not what an outside industry might be proposing for the financial benefit of only a small group. Beyond that, state encouragement of development of solar and other renewable energy sources seems like a good thing.”
What is your position on the latest redistricting proposal? Is it fair or unfair compared to the current system? Why or why not?
“The latest redistricting proposal, is an improvement over the existing system. The proposal to make available to U.S. citizens residing in Ohio, the computer software and data to draw a district map to present for consideration, is a way to permit citizen input, and is a good thing. The proposal to prohibit members of congress from participating as members on the redistricting commission, would remove a conflict of interest, and, would also be an improvement to the redistricting process.
“And, the prioritization of the specific criteria for drawing the congressional districts also guides the process in an improved, orderly manner; that sequence being as follows: compliance with state and federal law, contiguousness of districts, no district drawn to favor or disfavor a political party or candidate, minimizing of the number of splits between districts of counties, municipal corporations, and townships, maximizing of statewide proportion of districts corresponding with partisan preference of voters in state and federal elections during previous ten years, and, maximizing of the compactness of the districts.”
Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.