Public safety, education and business top Kiley's concerns
Kevin Kiley, the Republican Party candidate for the 6th Assembly District, said Friday growing up in the area provided him with opportunities and he wants to give back to the community through public service.
I was very fortunate to grow up in this area,” Kiley told The Lincoln News Messenger. “I was a member of the fifth graduating class of Granite Bay High School and I owe everything to this community and the opportunities I had growing up there.”
A former deputy state Attorney General, Kiley said he wants “to try to work to turn around some of the misguided policies that have harmed our state.”
While with the state Attorney General’s office, Kiley worked on a variety of cases, including murder, attempted murder, welfare fraud, and elder abuse and sex offenses against minors.
Kiley blames Proposition 47, passed in 2014, for an increase in crime “the likes of which California hasn’t seen in some time.” Prop. 47 reduced certain drug possession felonies to misdemeanors and required misdemeanor sentencing for petty theft, receiving stolen property and forging or writing bad checks when the amount is $950 or less.
“It is a direct result of a series of measures that have really started to have an adverse effect, including on the communities of this district,” Kiley said. “There are laws that are not in the interests of public safety or in the interests of rehabilitation.”
“I want to try and halt this dangerous course and there are a few things that could be done to correct the consequences of Prop. 47,” Kiley added. “For example, repeating the same crime should get a harsher penalty; possession of the date-rape drug, with the intent to rape, should be a felony; and stealing a gun should be a felony.”
Kiley said he believes voters “have a chance to not make the same mistake by defeating Prop. 57.”
Proposition 57 would provide parole for people with non-violent convictions who complete the full sentence of their primary offense.
“Certainly, the victims of their crimes do not consider them non-violent,” Kiley said. “Prop. 47 proponents mislead voters. Prop. 57 doesn’t give voters a realistic sense of the consequences of voting for it.”
Deciding to run for the 6th Assembly District
“It was a process of a few months. It was not a snap decision to run,” Kiley said.” I did not make it quickly.”
“People in our area are frustrated with the kind of government we’ve been getting in California,” Kiley added. “The legislature has been dominated by the Democrat Party and their policies are out of step with this area.”
Kiley said the GOP has a real re-building process ahead and added he wants to be a part of that effort while restoring some balance in the legislature.
“Our voice can be heard and it matters in the legislature,” Kiley said. “I think, as a legislator, you have a duty to represent the interests of your constituents and figure out ways to find common ground with the other side, especially as a member of the minority party.
“I think that’s what most people want; they’re tired of people in government talking over each other,” Kiley added. “We have to roll up our sleeves and find common-sense ways to solve the problems that affect all of us.”
Business climate here among the worse in the country
Kiley said he believes the business climate in California is among the worse in the country.
“The legislature and state agencies come up with new and interesting ways to make life difficult for business owners, especially small business,” Kiley said. “Every job that leaves California is a job a young person could use to build their future.”
Kiley said he wants to work with the other side of the aisle to find ways to make California a more attractive place for business. Kiley said he would seek changes in employment law.
“There is limited flexibility for employers and employees regarding work schedules,” Kiley said. “Also, there is a lot of ambiguity as far as how employees are classified and over-time rules.”
“And there are way too many frivolous lawsuits in California,” Kiley said. “There are things we could do to lower the liability businesses face.”
Kiley added that he would take legislative over-sight seriously.
“Some regulations are outdated and some agencies overstep their bounds,” Kiley said. “Once a bill is passed, we have to make sure it is implemented and does not exceed its scope.”
Education is important
Kiley, a former high school teacher in Los Angeles, said he cares about education. He taught 10th-grade English and also started and coached a high school debate team.
“I want to see more opportunities for kids across our state,” Kiley said.
Kiley will have a fundraiser Aug. 27 in Loomis with former Gov. Pete Wilson as the guest. Details of the fundraiser were not available, as of press time.