Iowa State Senate Candidate Tom Rubel says he has the practical experience for the job

Tom Rubel

WIth the primary election just two weeks away, we caught up with Iowa State Senate Candidate Tom Rubel. If elected, Rubel would serve District 41.

Right now, Rubel serves as the executive dean of regional economic development at Indian Hills Community College, but during his time serving as superintendent of Ottumwa Schools he says he learned how to deal with taxpayer dollars. He says the experience has prepared him to do the same if elected into the Iowa General Assembly. When he was hired has superintendent in the year 2000, the school system was $2 million in debt, and they had a negative solvency ratio of over 7-percent.

"The board hired me with many challenges, but this was one of the main challenges, so as the superintendent of schools, I had to figure out a way to work with people whether it be citizens, teachers, custodians, board members and beyond to see what strategies we could put in place to fix this budget. the end game was in 2006, we had $1.6 million in savings."

Other issues heâ??s passionate about economic development and increasing financial support for mental health services.

We spoke with his democratic opponent Steve Siegel on Monday. The two are both vying to run against current first-term republican State Senator Mark Chelgren.