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Idaho State Legislative Candidates

KIFI/KIDK Voter Guide: Chris Abernathy

  • Party:
    • Democratic Party
  • Career:
    • Member of the Idaho House of Representatives, representing District 29A. He assumed office in 2018. 
  • Website: abernathyforbannock.org
  • Facebook: Chris Abernathy
  • Twitter: @RepAbernathy
  • Instagram: Chris Abernathy
  • Background:
    • Incumbent Chris Abernathy was elected as district 29’s state representative in 2018. He’s served on executive boards at the local chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, a labor union founded in 1891. Abernathy said if reelected, he would try to reach across the aisle to find compromise in order to get things done.

Why are you running for reelection?

Abernathy: "I think one of the priorities is property taxes. They need to be addressed better. As far as access to public lands, that’s another big priority. And maybe we’ll see--if I do get back in--what we can do with the minimum wage.

You mentioned property taxes, how do you feel that’s impacted our community?

Abernathy: “I’m pretty sure it’s impacted the whole state. It needs to be addressed by local government. The problem is, the residents are taking the brunt of it. We may need to raise taxes on corporations maybe a little more.

You also mentioned public lands, what issues do you see surrounding that?

Abernathy: "Well, we just want to make sure we get access to them. There’s a lot of out-of-staters coming in and buying lands and closing them off so people can’t get to them. It shouldn’t be that way.

And minimum wages?

Abernathy: "As far as wages, I think if we could get them bumped up, it’s going to help a lot of the people who are having to have 3 or 4 jobs. They may not have to have that and be able to buy a house. It definitely needs to be addressed. We’re one of the lowest in the 48 as far as minimum wage.

Another big issue Bannock County is facing is rapid growth. How would you as a representative manage that?

Abernathy: "I think we need to definitely start looking at taxing the bigger businesses coming in. Amazon is building a huge warehouse up there in Meridian, and I’m hoping they're going to pay their fair share. I don’t want to say small businesses need any more taxes raised on them, they’re having a hard enough time as it is this year. 

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Emma Iannacone

Emma is a reporter for Local News 8 and KIDK Eyewitness News 3.

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