About two dozen East Texas residents filled the Nacogdoches County Courthouse with question in hand. Residents eagerly wanted to know where the Texas Comptroller candidate stood on key topics.
As the Democratic candidate gave his spiel, residents patiently listened. Once the floor was opened to questions ,one by one residents quizzed candidate Mike Collier on Texas policies and issues plaguing the state.
Topics that seem to be on the minds of several East Texans was the farm bill and health insurance, but topics like Texas school and road infrastructure took center stage. Stephen Wright is a public school teacher in Nacogdoches County. He said back in 2011 billions of dollars were taken away from the Texas public school system. Wright said these cuts affected him on a personal level.
"These cuts were unnecessary because the Comptroller at the time under forecasted how much money we were going to get. So our class sizes went up and teachers were fired," Wright said.
Sunday Wright voiced his concern and like what he heard.
Collier, who calls himself the watchdog said education is a number one priority. As a certified public accountant, he will make sure that the forecast is correct.
"I personally have a point of view that we should invest in education,” Collier said. “We need to fund it and get it right. The experts will develop how to do that and my job is to fund it. I think we need to have a very good educational system and a very good transportation system."
Transportation and roads was the main topic of concern for East Texan Joan Ludvik.
"Big business has been destroying our roads due to the fracking. They aren't getting fixed and no one is being held accountable for it," Ludvik said.
Ludvik said she pays her taxes and dues and feels that big business should be held accountable for their actions too.
Collier told Ludvik that there is a lot of funding for roads but the work isn’t being done. He plans on looking into this issue if elected.
Collier is running against Republican Glenn Hegar in November to replace current Comptroller Susan Combs, who is not seeking re-election.