The Kansas Insurance Commissioner, Ken Selzer, CPA, was in town on March 1, to attend the Harvey County Livestock Association meeting. Selzer, who grew up in Goessel and graduated from Goessel High School, was very thankful to be back in the area where his roots are buried.
“I just very much appreciate being back in the central part of Kansas, because we spend a lot of time here, including a number of relatives that are still in the area and the communities around here,” Selzer said.
Selzer has served Kansas as the Insurance Commissioner for the last three and a half years, and in this upcoming election he will be running for governor. One of the things that Selzer is happiest about in his term as Insurance Commissioner is how efficient they have become.
“Growing the number of people that we serve with a reduced number of employees, our calls into the office are up 30 percent and we’re doing it with 20 percent fewer employees,” Selzer said. “We’ve lowered the cost for providing this valuable service to the people of Kansas.”
Selzer is running for governor, and one of the reasons he is doing so is because he thinks they can take what’s been happening in their department and translate that to the top of the state’s government.
“We’re running for governor because other people have seen the great work we have done in the Insurance Commissioner’s office,” Selzer said. “We’ve lowered costs, improved customer service and a lot of people wonder why that can’t that be done in the broader state government.”
Selzer believes his background in accounting as a CPA is what the state needs from its governor, especially with all of the budget issues that are going on.
“It is exactly the type of skillset that’s needed right now in the state of Kansas,” Selzer said. “We have so many budget issues.”
Selzer will be running for governor of Kansas in the fall, and one of the reasons he thinks he’s best fit for this position is because of his experience as an accountant. Selzer believes that his experience with handling money and budgets is what can turn the budget problems around.
“It looks like in 2020 we’re confronted with another set of budget issues because so many costs have been delayed and deferred, including some pretty big KPERS and payments that need to be made,” Selzer said. “We’ll have budget issues into the foreseeable future that need to be thought through in a calm and thoughtful way.”
Selzer also believes that one of the things that distinguishes him from other candidates for governor is his agriculture background.
“I grew up on a farm in the rural part of central Kansas, right here in the heart of Kansas,” Selzer said. “I went on to K-State, became a CPA, but married a farm girl by Louisburg, near the Louisburg Cider Mill, and we own a farm there now. We’re very deeply entrenched in the ag economy here in Kansas.”
Agriculture is one of Selzer’s big campaign points, and he believes that if Kansas is going to continue to grow and succeed as a state, that more emphasis needs to be placed on agriculture.
“We need to make ag grow in Kansas if Kansas is going to grow,” Selzer said. “We have been fluttering along at a below national average rate on growth in our Kansas economy. It’s because we haven’t paid enough attention to the important sectors here in Kansas, including ag, including manufacturing and including the service economies that we see in some of the bigger cities here in Kansas.”
Selzer’s other emphasis has been placed on education and the quality of education throughout the state. Selzer has funded scholarships for high school students throughout the state and he wants to make sure that they receive the same opportunities that he had as a student.
“We are going to be focusing throughout the state on increased accountability by school districts,” Selzer said. “As you know, K-12 funding is one of the biggest expenditures for the state of Kansas. We need to make sure, throughout the state, that we are getting the most for our dollars that we do spend.”
Commissioner Selzer, CPA, will also be back in town on March 13 for the McPherson County Farm Bureau Board meeting.
[via MidKansas Online]