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8/20/2013 6:00:00 AM
GOP candidate urges reform to social safety net

Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - To Republican gubernatorial candidate Hugh Hallman, it's all about working smarter, not harder.

Hallman, a former principal of Tempe Preparatory Academy and a former mayor of Tempe, told the Republican Men's Club Monday morning that social services must be reformed, the state's Medicaid expansion is needed and that Common Core is good for Arizona students.

"The state has gotten involved in things it shouldn't be involved in," he said.

It's supporting people who have learned that it is easier to take a handout, than to work to support themselves, Hallman said.

He pointed to what he called a broken health care system where hospitals are required to take care of people who can't afford to pay for their care.

"We are giving people an incentive to not take care of themselves," he said. "People aren't stupid. They know the best and fastest care they can get is at the emergency room."

And it's not the federal or local government that pays for those costs, Hallman said. "It's all the rest of us on private insurance that's paying for that bill."

The federal government's Medicare and Medicaid programs don't pay full price for medical services for their patients. Doctors have to take what they can get from those programs, so the remaining cost gets passed on to private insurance companies. Those companies pass those costs on to consumers through higher insurance premiums, Hallman said.

"The health care expansion (passed by Gov. Jan Brewer) stinks," he said. "But it's better than the alternative."

At the same time, government needs to reform its services so that only those who desperately need services like Medicare and Medicaid get them.

"A safety net is designed to help those who can't help themselves," he said. "We've taken an eraser to the last part of that sentence. We've created an underclass of people."

"We all know people who can't get their act together," he said. "But the moment you supplant a person who is able to take care of themselves with a handout, they quickly learn that it is easier to take that handout than go out and support themselves. We have got to make them do what they can for themselves first."

As the mayor of Tempe, Hallman said he pushed and worked with more than 30 different social organizations and faith-based groups to get involved with the homeless in Tempe.

Once those organizations were able to meet the basic needs of the homeless - food, shelter, a place to get cleaned up - Hallman got the city's social services department involved in helping them find permanent housing and jobs.

That model could easily be used at the state level, he said.

"It's not how much money you spend, it's how you spend it," Hallman said.

He pointed to the state's education system as an example. Most of the money spent on education in the state doesn't go to teachers or the students, he said. It goes to fancy buildings and administrative costs.

According to a recent study by the Arizona Auditor General, approximately 54.2 percent of funding for schools went to the classroom last year and the remaining 45.8 percent of spending went to support administrative, food, maintenance and transportation costs.

"Kids and teachers don't care about fancy school buildings," he said.

His charter school, Tempe Prep, is open to the public and has to accommodate students at all levels of learning, he said.

Yet the district has been listed as one of the top 10 best performing districts in the state for the last few years because the district places its emphasis and spends its money on the students and the teachers, he said.

In Tempe Prep classrooms, teachers have 22 students per class, with a maximum of four classes per day, he said. Teachers are required to tutor students both before and after class.

His school saves money because it doesn't spend it on buildings and is not part of the teachers' union.

Spending money wisely on teachers and students is also important to the state's economy, Hallman said.

"Our economy is dependent on an educated populace," he said. And the only way to get more money into government to pay for the services that people need, such as education, is to grow the economy, Hallman said.

Businesses need an educated workforce that can think for itself, he said. Schools have to teach that. That is what Common Core, a new set of teaching standards approved by the state three years ago, is all about.

"It's teaching kids to think. Then they can ask the right questions to get to the solutions," Hallman said.

An educated populace is also important for our society to survive, he said. They won't be able to make an informed decision about who to elect to run the country.

For more information on Hallman, visit

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Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, August 22, 2013
Article comment by: V Stokes

"The decision to have kids or not have kids should not predicate the amount of wages a person earns." finally stated your true feelings. So...a living wage is enough to support a family of 4, paying for rent, medical, dental, vehicle, etc so that they don't need any government assistance? And when they have another child, they get a raise? Even though their job hasn't changed? That must be true since they would no longer be able to afford everything on their prior pay. Or should the kids just eat less and visit the doctor and dentist less often?

Just using a figure of $3000 per mo...that would mean the 30 y/o just starting work as a cashier (the only skill she has except making babies) would be getting about $18.75 an hour. Shades of Detroit autoworkers.

You held up the skilled, experienced Costco worker who had been there 22 years and making just over $22/hr (IIRC) as a good thing. By your thinking he should be making 2 or 3 times what the new cashier makes, shouldn't he?

Living wage is a misnomer. Fair wage seems more appropriate.

Posted: Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew


“Since he hasn't, maybe you will.”

I have answered your ridiculous question a total of five times, but here we go again.

“Define ‘living wage’.”

An amount sufficient to insure an individual is not forced to go on food stamps and taxpayer supported Medicaid because of crap wages paid by their employer.

“Is it the paying a 20 y/o living at home the same amount as a 30 y/o with 3 kids, rent, bills, etc, for the same job?”

Yes it is. The decision to have kids or not have kids should not predicate the amount of wages a person earns.

“If the second is true...I smell a huge lawsuit.”

As I told you before that is a ridiculous assertion.

”Just a simple answer...what is a ‘living wage’?”

See above

And since you are so hot on demanding answers when are you going to tell us why you agree that the taxpayers should be forced to pay for food stamps and medical access for working Americans? Why won’t you tell us why you support places like Wal-Mart training their employees on how to apply for taxpayer supported aid?

Posted: Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Article comment by: THE TEA PARTY IS ON KOCH

@common sense: Please tell me how the republicans are going create well paying jobs. What are their ideas? How are they going to implement ?
The republicans DO NOT have a magic bullet for creating a vast number of new and well paying jobs. Their ideas have already been tried!

Posted: Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Article comment by: dv s

Can't believe the lies that are in these responses...and you sorry people actually believe them....

Please use COMMON SENSE...or America will never survive.!.

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: V Stokes

"80% of their employees qualify for social services." Incorrect as I mentioned in another post. You must read things the same way as the person I responded to.

Since he hasn't, maybe you will. Define "living wage". Is it the paying a 20 y/o living at home the same amount as a 30 y/o with 3 kids, rent, bills, etc, for the same job? Or is it paying the former less for the same work as the latter...because the latter needs more to live? If it's the first, then the 20 y/o is going to be living high on the hog. If the second is true...I smell a huge lawsuit.

Just a simple answer...what is a "living wage"?

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: Common Sense

It seems like everyone is blaming the Republicans in Kingman for the lack of jobs because they are in power apparently.
Since the Democrats are in power in Washington, I can only surmise that you blame them (Obama and the Senate) for the pathetic unemployment rate of the last few years in America. Oh yea, it's probably Bush's fault since he was President once upon a time in their fairy tale logic.
The ABO (Anybody but Obama) bumper sticker the Republicans used in the last election is now being used by the Democrats in fixing blame for anything.

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: anonymous anonymous

Not to mention the fact that people should be paid a living wage. If people can afford all of their expenses and health insurance/healthcare needs they will do it. Instead we have companies like Walmart who are the largest employer in America and yet 80% of their employees qualify for social services. Government needs to hold these people accountable and stop pushing the burden onto tax payers. Meanwhile they make an ungodly amount of profit every year but no legislators address that. They continue to let them pay a wage that no one can live on at our expense.

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: concerned citizen

"We have got to make them do what they can for themselves first."
Exactly how do you do that? How do you make someone do something like that w/o holding a gun to their head. And, if you want them to go to work, where are the jobs, where are the businesses, and where will the money come from?
"Kids and teachers don't care about fancy school buildings."

Have you seen some of the schools, especially here in Kingman? How long did Lee Williams take to get built, and how long did it sit empty?

It takes years and years to get a new building, a school, the project authorized and the money allocated, ground broken, and finally built, then equipped. It can take up to 10 years in some years!

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: The Fox Hound

Mr Hallman can you please tell me how we handle the people who get sick and really don't have a job or any money for that matter. Give me the Republican plan to help those people because they are out there by the thousands. Please tell me how you would handle this problem other than have the govt. pay for those who can't. I'm waiting for the Republican plan. They have voted against Obamacare 40 times but what have they got to offer the sick.

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: Why Would We Vote for Hallman When He Practice Getting State Handouts

Kingmanites are you aware that charter schools are not allowed to take tuition but must be funded by the tax payers with the same amount of taxes being paid for each student.

Opps, charter schools GET $1100 MORE PER STUDENT and have "learned that it is easier to take a handout...". The reason the state legislature says is that if TAKES MORE for the charter schools to (build those) fancy buildings and (pay) administrative costs."

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: Funny How it's Always the Others Taking the $$$ When in Fact it is Really the Hallmans

"It's supporting people who have learned that it is easier to take a handout..." - yep, like when he took the state money to build his charter school.

"It goes to fancy buildings and administrative costs." Just like this area. We the tax payers have paid to have
* 2 tax-payer paid school administration buildings -
KUSD on McDonald St. and KAOL on Harrison,
* 2 sets of grade schools - one with KUSD and one with KAOL,
* 2 sets of intermediate/middle schools - one with KUSD and one with KAOL,
* 2 sets of high schools - one with KUSD and one with KAOL.

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: We The People{me} Thinking

WoW same old B.S. I've heard for the last 6+ yrs by the republican party and still no real creative solutions, always blame the poor for lack of jobs and being needy and being lazy -- the only how about bring more jobs to american soil(kingman) instead of blaming the poor for your lack of creative leadership ,lets hear some rant & rave about what your going to propose as a solution to the lack of quality good paying jobs in america(kingman) and how do you determine who receives healthcare and who don't?

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Article comment by: trained observer

People might not need this kind of safety net if they had jobs but this fact seems to escape the Republicans.

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