Mills: You deserve better, we must do better, I will do better (column) | VailDaily.com

Mills: You deserve better, we must do better, I will do better (column)

Nicki Mills
Valley Voices

Editor's note: Per the Vail Daily's election guidelines, each candidate running to represent constituents in the newspaper's distribution area has been given the option to submit one column to present his or her election platform.

Costs of living in House District 26 are becoming prohibitive to residents. The costs of health care and housing are increasing beyond what our jobs and businesses can support in our district. We need a representative who understands this and will work to effectively address these challenges. It's not enough to simply represent you in Colorado's State Legislature; I want to, more importantly, serve you in the Statehouse.

I am Nicki Mills, and I want to serve Eagle and Routt counties as your next State Representative for House District 26. I want to earn your trust and vote. And I want to serve you.

We are blessed to live in one of the most beautiful places in this great nation. However, life here is not always easy. Like you, I am sick and tired of going to friends' going away parties. They're forced to leave because they cannot afford to live here or because they are exhausted from working so much that they don't have the time to enjoy life.

And, like you, I am sad and tired of losing friends to mental health and substance abuse. We must focus on mental health, health insurance costs and substance abuse and suicide prevention. In short, we must do better, and here is my promise:

If it creates jobs and increases wages, I'm for it.

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If it lowers your health care costs, I'm for it.

If it saves lives, I'm for it.

If it protects our water, advances rural economic development and transportation and preserves our environment and unique landscapes, I'm for it.

… And if it's politics as usual, I'll fight against it.

We need new leaders with servants hearts and new perspectives to address the challenges of Eagle and Routt counties, leaders who know these challenges because we've been through them. There are already enough fancy-speaking lawyers and career politicians looking for their next paid government jobs. We don't need another one.

You deserve a servant's voice that understands the needs of your families and businesses. I am that voice; I am long on the kinds of life experience that truly reflects and represents the people of our district. I was born with a servant's heart and put it to work early in my life, helping my family establish a food pantry to serve the poor. I have been working my entire life.

I am the proud mother of two fine sons, a business owner, a Christian, an outdoorsman, and one of you — not a career politician.

My supporters include lifelong Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliated voters, who are helping me make our campaign successful. I can and will work as a moderate to mediate solutions to our district's most critical problems. I do not embrace radical policies of a party, and I am not beholden to special interest groups or PACs. My campaign is funded by you, my friends and supporters in Routt and Eagle counties. My opponent has collected tens of thousands of dollars from outside of our district.

I have no conflicts of interest due to my job that prevent me from voting on bills that would go against my boss' testimony and recommendations and would protect children from child molesters. I am not going to make excuses and duck out of meetings and votes in order to avoid conflict instead of protecting children.

We need to keep taxes low and defend our rights. Our friends and families deserve leaders who work tirelessly to make our lives better, not leave things the same and serve only donors.

Frankly, I do not understand why the past elected officials have not done better. Over the last many years, numerous career politicians brag about their accomplishments, yet it is unclear why — because health care has become unaffordable, housing costs have soared out of reach, and our roads have deteriorated.

We can do better. And with your vote, we will. Join me in helping the people you love stay safe and close. It is time to elect a mom with life experience, compassion and common sense.

Nicki Mills is a candidate for state representative for House District 26. Learn more at https://nickimills.com.