Street Address: Terry Gipson for NYS Senate PO Box 55, Rhine
Race: Senate District 41 State legislator
Political and civic experience: I was re-elected to and am currently serving in my second term as elected Trustee on the Rhinebeck Village Board of Trustees. I have worked with our energetic and diverse board to find solutions to help improve the quality of life for both our residents and our business community.
Residency: Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, NYIncumbent?: No
Education: Encouraged to work hard and to be a self-starter, I put myself through school, graduating from Texas Tech with a BFA in 1987, and Penn State with an MFA in 1991. To do so, I worked as a landscaper, dishwasher, cook, carpenter, painter, cafeteria manager, and scenic and lighting designer.
Occupation: I am a set designer and owner of Gipson Design Group Inc., a small custom scenic design company, located in Rhinebeck, NY.
Why are you running for office or seeking re-election?
What in your personal, civic or professional experience recommends your election or return to office?
I am not a career politician. However, over the course of my 20-year career, I’ve established a track record of providing creative solutions to complex problems. Working with diverse groups of people and within budgets and deadlines, I have been a leader in my field. We need such proactive, creative thinking in Albany to solve the biggest issues we are experiencing now, and to head off the big problems that loom in our future as well.
As a Senator, I will work hard to use these skills to work with anyone, regardless of party, who has a good idea to move our state forward. And, just as the needs of my clients have been my top priority during my career and with my own business, the needs of my constituents will be my top priority in Albany, and back home in my district.
My wife, Michelle, and I are active in my local Historical Society, Chambers of Commerce and local libraries, and support many other community organizations. I am a former volunteer fireman and past president of my fire company in Hartsdale. And I am an Eagle Scout.
What would be your top three priorities if you are elected or re-elected?
I’m a small business owner. I know from personal experience just how hard it is out there to succeed. We need creative thinking to keep small businesses here, and to make it possible for new ones to open and create good, local jobs.
I want to bring renewable energy to the Hudson Valley. Not just the energy itself, but the technology, manufacturing, and research jobs that come with it. I want our region to become the “Renewable Energy Capital of the World.”
No one can argue that offering a quality education to our children is essential to the future of our state, because they represent 100% of that future. We should be a leader in ensuring quality education, regardless of where children live or what their parents’ income. Our challenge is to find an equitable way to pay for that first rate education... one that has the best teachers, the latest technologies and modern schools. Right now, we pay for a very large part of that education through property taxes.
We must explore new ways of funding education that isn’t based on the value of property, but rather on people’s ability to pay. This will lower the cost of living for homeowners, working families and seniors. Our neighbors won’t have to flee to less expensive states, and we’ll encourage new businesses to join us, right here in the Hudson Valley and throughout New York, bringing new jobs and new life to our economy.
Rising health care costs have been the largest obstacle to economic recovery. I support Governor Cuomo in enacting the Affordable Care Act, which is the best solution for tackling these problems. Already it has resulted in the lowest growth in health care costs in decades. When fully implemented, New Yorkers will see that the ACA isn’t what its critics have made it out to be, but that it will lower costs, increase coverage, and save money.