Republican candidate and incumbent Greg Dolezal and Democrat candidate Brent Binion are running against each other for the state Senate District 27 seat in the 2022 General Election on Tuesday, Nov. 8.
District 27 represents the majority of Forsyth County and nowhere else.
Meet the candidates:
Greg Dolezal (incumbent)
Residence: Forsyth County since 2006.
Occupation: Small business owner (software).
Political experience: First elected to the state Senate in 2018, seeking third two-year term.
Family: Wife, Natalie, and four children, 10, 8, 5 and 4 years old.
Occupation: Fellow Learning Architect.
Political experience: None.
Family: Married with two children.
Q: If elected, what legislation would you like to take on in 2023?
Dolezal: "I support Governor Kemp’s initiative for both an income tax refund and property tax break to help Forsyth County residents and homeowners offset financial challenges they have faced from both inflation and rising home values/property taxes. I am also working with our delegation and Board of Education on a floating homestead exemption for our local school property taxes to ensure homeowners do not receive dramatic year-over-year increases in their property taxes. On the statewide level, we need to ensure Georgia remains a top state for economic development and job growth by continuing to lower our income tax rate which puts us at a competitive disadvantage with our neighboring states, preparing our students for next generation jobs and passing 'right to start' legislation to spur entrepreneurship."
Binion: "If elected, I would advocate for a Georgia Voter’s Bill of Rights including an amendment to the Georgia Constitution supporting free and equal elections. Currently gerrymandering is effectively robbing Georgians from fair representation, which not only dismantles democracy, but gives rise to autocracy and extremism.
"With fair representation Georgia can become a place where policies actually represent the will of the people. This is especially important now that we are seeing people’s rights, especially women and minorities, threatened and in some cases eliminated. Voices are being silenced. The United States should be a country of the people, by the people, for the people."
Q: Education legislation including how schools can teach divisive concepts (House Bill 1084) and the Parents’ Bill of Rights (House Bill 1178) were big topics this year. What are your thoughts on those pieces of legislation?
Dolezal: "I was a supporter of both of these pieces of legislation and voted for each on the Senate floor. K-12 education represents about 40% of our state budget and both of these bills took steps to ensure we are funding a system where children are learning skills they will need as they enter the workforce and adulthood, while keeping divisive political ideas out of the classroom and providing parents protected means to remain an integral part of the education process."
Binion: "These two bills were based on effective propaganda from outsiders, designed to outrage parents, demonize our schools, and divide our community. This buried the more important issue of two decades of inadequate funding for public education in Georgia.
"We have a top-rated school district, but there are many real issues that need to be addressed to support growth and opportunities for academic excellence for our children.
"Proper funding is a key to many of these issues including staff pay, student transportation, and improving educational facilities. This must be an investment that is part of a sustainable strategy to benefit our children’s future and the future of Georgia."
Q: Transportation is commonly one of the biggest issues for local voters. If elected, what steps will you take to improve transportation?
Dolezal: "Primarily, we need to ensure Forsyth County continues to receive investment from GDOT. The County has done a good job working with the delegation, Governor Kemp, and Lt. Gov Duncan to communicate our needs to GDOT, and we have seen fruit of that labor in investments in major thoroughfares in the County. Specifically, McGinnis Ferry, Highway 9, 369 and GA 400, Highway 20, and Post Road have all received funding or commitments to funds over the past few years. As growth comes to the north end of the County, we need to quickly address 306 and some of our other congested areas in the north. I support increasing GDOT’s funding with some of our budget surplus to accelerate these projects."
Binion: "As a state senator, I would help to ensure that $1.5 billion dollars for funding transportation in Georgia from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act was appropriately allocated to serve Forsyth County, supplementing TSPLOST. This was championed by our Georgia senators and our current Congresswoman, Carolyn Bourdeaux (and opposed by all Republican members of the United States House of Representatives from Georgia).
"To quote Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux who said it best: 'Everyone who has to sit on 400 or I-85 knows we need to invest in how we move people around our communities. This money will help Georgia modernize our transportation infrastructure and invest in public transportation, giving people legitimate alternatives to their cars and freeing up our roads for others.'"