Getting to know the candidates: Rep. Bob Kulp
Part of an ongoing series highlighting November election candidates
MARSHFIELD — Rep. Bob Kulp is the incumbent Republican candidate running unopposed in the Wisconsin 69th Assembly District.
Kulp is the owner of a Stratford roofing business and has been in politics for three years, all time held in his current seat.
On roadwork funding
Funding for roadwork is going to be a big debate. It’s probably the biggest debate. The debate is how do we fund the roads that are super critical to the economy of the state. The debate, at this point, is probably between the governor and the Assembly and the Senate in terms of what is going to come out of the governor’s budget.
The governor has made it pretty clear that he doesn’t want to increase any revenues without having an offsetting revenue somewhere else, but we have nearly a $900 million budget shortfall. To put that into perspective, … that is about one-third of our road budget.
That means either one-third less roads will get done if there is no increase in revenue. We do have an audit going for the DOT (Wisconsin Department of Transportation), which will probably show some places where we can be more efficient with the current budget, but, really, the gauntlet has really been thrown down by the Assembly Republicans, saying that we have to have all options on the table so we can look at possibly doing a gas tax increase.
The governor has made it pretty clear that he is not interested in that, so it will be an interesting dynamic going into the next session.
On his district’s greatest needs
One of the things I hear a lot of is workforce needs, from employers primarily. They are always looking for additional labor, and workforce is really a big challenge, that along with education funding and just making sure that we’re connecting the dots in education.
Part of it is workforce-related, and part of it is the ability to actually fund it.
On his accomplishments in office
One of the things that gives me the biggest pleasure and joy is to be an advocate for people that feel that they are not being heard by state agencies, whether it’s the DNR, the DOT, or any number of the state agencies.
The bill that I probably am most proud of is the one that helped all school districts, municipalities, and nonprofits. When they are expanding, when they are putting up a building, historically you had to direct purchase materials from vendors.
This is a way to streamline that process and get government out of the way, and every school district, municipality, and nonprofit, when they are building an addition or a new building is just jumping for joy over this cutting of the red tape.
I would say that the sales tax for construction materials for tax exempt entities is what I am really very proud of.
On his upcoming years if re-elected
Personal property tax repeal or phasing out is probably the biggest challenge I have on my plate. I’ve kind of been taxed as the Assembly person to lead that charge. That is the number one thing coming up.