• N.C. House District 8

    Tony Moore vs. Kandie D. Smith

    Tony Moore

    Job: Business Owner of North Carolina Driving School Inc., Hines Crossroads Motors LLC, Tony Moore Rentals LLC, and Sea Mistress Charters Inc.

     

    Education: Associate of Arts, Lenoir Community College; Bachelor of Science, Appalachian State University; Master of Arts, Appalachian State University; Master of Arts, East Carolina University; Educational Specialist, East Carolina University.

     

    Top priority if elected or re-elected:

    Healthcare is my number one priority. As a senior citizen I realize throughout life that those who have good health have the ability to have a successful life. We need to improve the healthcare of those in the East. We need to lower insurance rates and drug cost. We need a well-trained staff with the best facility to treat our population. The best method to make an improvement is to serve on a House Committee to work on these issues. As a member of the Study Commission on Aging as a legislator it was a learning experience. My mother had an automotive accident at the age of 31 and was left disabled physically and mentally handicapped. So for the next forty-three years it was a journey of learning about Healthcare.

     

    How will you involve your constituents in the process of making decisions?

    As a former state senator, I met with a group of selected individuals on Mondays in Wilson County and on Fridays in Pitt County. This served as a sounding board to hear other opinions on bills for legislation. I was the first legislator that started a weekly newsletter for citizens. Citizens would respond with their opinions in the newsletter. Communication is the key to being successful.

     

    What three things about you to do most want voters to know?

    I am the most experienced elected official in Pitt County who has been active at the General Assembly since the 1980s. During this time there have been many issues. Some I have been included in crafting legislation before serving and since I served in the General Assembly.

    First, during my early years, I met the late NC Senator Robert Humber. He made an impact on my life. So I have been involved in every level of political government. Serving as a poll worker for eight years, precinct chairperson in two precincts, campaign worker/manager, as well serving a President of the Pitt County Young Democrats before I began running for office.

    Secondly, my career has been public education for over 45 years. Thirdly, my business career began early in life with managing a business during my teen years and owning a business at age 22. As the owner of North Carolina Driving Schools, we have been serving the public is schools for over 30 years. We presently serve 40 school systems in our state. I am very proud that I have been able to offer a full benefits package from the beginning.

    Third, we need an elected official who understands all sides of the issues and is willing to bridge the gap to compromise on both sides of the issues. We need an elected official that does not use their position to get out of trouble with law enforcement. I have been honored to serve since 1997 as a Winterville Town Council member. I left for three years when I was elected for the NC Senate. During the first year representing Pitt and Wilson counties and Lenoir, Greene, Pitt and Wayne counties during my second year.

     

    Is there anything else you wish to say?

    I am presently in my sixth four-year term on the Winterville Town Council. Before I became an educator, I was employed for three years with the Town of Winterville as the building inspector, Waste Water Treatment Plant operator, as well as working with the other departments. While with the town I did internships in Town Administration and Town Planning.

    I also served 19 years with Pitt County Schools as a teacher/coach and administrator. During my public school teaching career I was employed part-time for 10 years at Pitt Community College.

     

     

    Kandie D. Smith

    Job: Trainer, small business owner.

     

    Education: Bachelor's degree from Charleston Southern University, major in sociology, minor in communications.

     

    Top priority if elected or re-elected?

    At the present moment, there is no more pressing issue in our state than expanding Medicaid. This was true when I ran in 2018, but today in 2020, in the middle of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the reasons for why we need Medicaid expansion, and why we need it now, have never been clearer.

    Currently, more than 500,000 North Carolinians fall within the healthcare "coverage gap." These people - our friends and neighbors - make just a little too much money to qualify for regular government healthcare programs, but they don't quite make enough to be able to afford private insurance. This leaves them completely without coverage, which is not only detrimental to the health and well-being of the individual, but to the state as well.

    In Pitt County alone, we would see some tremendous benefits from expanding Medicaid. An estimated 6,000 Pitt County residents who are uninsured today would qualify for the program, and more than 2,000+ new, good-paying jobs would be created as a result.

    If we want to talk about making a good, significant, immediate impact through legislation in our area, I can think of no better option than to expand Medicaid in North Carolina today.

     

    How will you involve your constituents in the process of making decisions?

    I have always made transparency a cornerstone of my time in public office. I pride myself on the relationship I have with our community, and every decision I make in the legislature is made only with the input and consideration of those who live in our area. Over the past two years, I have worked hard to involve constituents in the process of government through my regular Legislative Newsletter, which is released bi-weekly during the legislative session, and by holding regular, quarterly Town Halls to hear from and interact with the members of our community.

    I also make myself as accessible as possible through social media, where constituents can check for weekly posts and updates from my office on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. If you have not already connected with me through these platforms, I highly encourage constituents to do so to stay up to date on the work being done in Raleigh.

    Why should voters choose you for the position you are running for?

    The people of Pitt County need a strong voice that is willing to stand up and fight for what's right for the people of our area. While serving on the Greenville City Council, as the Mayor of Greenville, and over the past two years as a State Representative, I have lived every day with a mission to serve the people of Pitt County. The love I have for our area and the people of it is what drives me in the work I do in the legislature, and as I look towards the future, I am endlessly excited by the opportunities for progress that lay ahead.

    Pitt County is a special place to live. With our diverse population and institutions like ECU and Vidant Medical Center, we must be prepared to face the most pressing issues of our day, including healthcare, education, economic development, and agriculture just to name a few. I believe that the people of Pitt County make it the best place to live in the state, and I look forward to continuing the work of growing our area in an equitable and responsible manner, hand in hand with our neighbors.

     

    What three things about you do you most want voters to know?

    For years I have worked as a substitute teacher in our Pitt County Schools. Working in this capacity has allowed me a unique perspective on the challenges and needs of our area teachers. Education is a top priority for me, and I will continue working every day to ensure that our state boasts the most robust education system it can by fully investing in all aspects of the education system from students, to teachers, to support staff and non-certified personnel.

    As a member of the House Standing Committees on Agriculture, Education K-12, Health, Appropriations, and Appropriations (Capital), I have dedicated myself to working across diverse topic areas to ensure that I am representing our area to the fullest extent possible.

    During the 2019-2020 Legislative Session, I passed more pieces of legislation than any other freshman House Democrat in the State of North Carolina, and I have always been willing to work with colleagues across the aisle to get things done - because that is what elected officials are elected to do. To work together, and get things done on behalf of the people of our state.

     

    Is there anything else you wish to say?

    Please vote. It doesn't matter who you vote for, only that you participate in the process. Our government works best when everybody's voice is heard, and that certainly includes yours.