Tulsa Businessman and Gubernatorial candidate, Kevin Stitt made his second stop in Poteau for a meet and greet at the Days Inn on Thursday, June 7, 2018.
Stitt, a conservative Republican, is “running to end politics as usual at the State Capitol and to lead Oklahoma with a vision to be Top Ten in growth, education, infrastructure, healthcare, and government efficiency.”
Stitt told the crowd gathered in the Grand Room of the Days Inn that he grew up in Norman, Oklahoma and graduated from Oklahoma State University. To fund his way through college he sold books door to door. After college, the entrepreneur and businessman founded Gateway Mortgage in 2000 with $1,000 and a computer.
According to his website, Gateway Mortgage is a nationwide mortgage company that today employs 1,200 people, has 164 field offices in 41 states, and holds a loan servicing portfolio of more than $16 billion.
Stitt is promising to bring his proven business experience to state government where he will put Oklahoma’s checkbook online, apply performance metrics, and audit every state agency.
Stitt also wants to give the governor more accountability to fire underperforming agency leaders that are in appointed positions and do an audit for all agencies.
Education being a major topic this election, Stitt believes that Oklahoma can and should be in the Top Ten in Education. He believes that teacher pay should match the pay of teachers in the surrounding states.
Stitt likes the policy proposed by a conservative group of House legislators to give schools the flexibility to use part of their current property tax revenue on teacher pay instead of being restricted to buildings and infrastructure.
He would also expand the use of video technology to deliver AP classes across our state, especially in rural areas where we have bright, hardworking youth but not enough certified teachers.
According to his webpage “In a Stitt administration, Kevin will call for the Legislature to create a temporary program to provide $5,000 bonuses to certified teachers who are teaching in Oklahoma for the first time. This will help to incentivize the 400 students graduating from our Oklahoma universities with education degrees to stay and boost our state’s recruitment efforts.
“A recent survey shows Oklahoma has 536 vacant teaching positions for the next school year. We have gone from 32 emergency certifications six years ago to nearly 2,000 today.”
Stitt will be on the June 26th Republican Ballot for Governor.
Other Republican Candidates vying for Governor are: Gary Richardson, Christopher Barnett, Dan Fisher, Eric Foutch, Todd Lamb, Barry Gowdy, Blake Cowboy Stephens, Gary Jones and Mick Cornett.