69th District Assembly candidate profiles
Donna Rozar opposes COVID shutdowns and pushes for local control
Donna Rozar, Republican candidate for 69th Assembly, says she would pursue a rural agenda if elected on Nov. 3, which would include expanded broadband access, enhanced transportation aid paid to local governments and less reliance on property taxes.
Rozar, a nurse at Marshfi eld Medical Center and a 20-year veteran of the Wood County Board of Supervisors, said expanded broadband was needed in rural areas like the sprawling 69th Assembly District because of home, computer- based learning required during the COVID- 19 pandemic.
The Marshfield resident said she opposes higher gasoline taxes, but supports diverting money away from urban southeastern Wisconsin to give to local towns, counties, cities and villages to maintain their roads and bridges.
She said she opposes higher gasoline taxes because they would penalize rural residents who typically have further to drive to get to work. She said she would support toll roads that could increase transportation revenue.
Rozar said she is frustrated with the level of property taxes that people here pay and, to lower them, she would support raising sales taxes as an alternative.
The candidate, a Virginia native who still has a bit of a Southern drawl, said the current relationship between state and local government has been “frustrating” and that she is inspired to go to Madison to improve the situation.
She said, however, that she would never vote to undo levy limits on local municipalities.
She did say that she could support giving municipalities extra flexibility to meet the limits.
Rozar said that she supported local governments but feared that “rogue” local boards would abuse their taxing authority should the state government get rid of its cap on levies. The Republican, a long-time chairman of the Wood County Board’s Health and Human Services Committee, said health care access is a major priority for her. She touts the nurse education program at Marshfield Clinic, Marshfield, for training local people to become nurses. Rozar said, however, that she did not favor accepting federal Medicaid money through the Affordable Care Act because doing so, she feels, would burden the state budget over the long run.
Rozar said she is “distraught” over the cost of health care, but doesn’t have much of a plan to deal with that. “It’s a work in progress,” she admitted.
The Republican said she agreed the state has the power to control pandemics like COVID-19 but that she is loath to impose mandates on people, schools and businesses to try and fight the disease.
“I hate the mandatory stuff,” she said.
Rozar said, yes, the state should quarantine individuals and shut down businesses to halt TB, but does not want to do these things to battle COVID-19.
“I never want to see us shut down the economy again,” she said.
Asked about the local economy, Rozar said it was “struggling” and that the best thing the state government could do to help businesses was to “not get in the way” and make sure that regulations remain flexible enough to allow businesses to succeed.
Rozar said she supports finding ways to “incentivize” local towns to support retail shopping.
She said this summer she tried to support local merchants at farmer’s markets and Main Street stores, but, these days, Rozar added, it’s tough to find a local store that can sell something simple like shoes.
“You have to provide incentives so that people can set up shop,” she said. If elected, Rozar promised to attend local municipal meetings and hold regular get-togethers with citizens to discuss state issues.