Q. Do you favor extending MARTA rail lines into Cobb?
Setzler: At a cost of $100 million per mile, the economics of extending heavy-urban rail into Cobb County just doesn’t make sense.
Q. Are you in favor of light-rail lines for Cobb? If so, where?
Setzler: At a cost of $50 million per mile, less costly light rail technologies that are under development could be a solution in 15-20 years for redeveloping Cobb Parkway and connecting to the Atlanta Beltline.
Q. Do you think Cobb’s light-rail lines should link up with MARTA trains? Where?
Setzler: I support using existing freight rail lines to provide commuter rail service to Cobb’s historic downtowns within the next five years. At a price of $3 million per mile to fund needed upgrades, commuter rail would cost a fraction of other rail options, cost less than expanding our Interstates, and would energize the historic downtowns of Smyrna, Marietta, Kennesaw, and Acworth.
Q. Do you favor adding or converting Interstate lanes to toll lanes?
Setzler: No, I believe that toll lanes should always represent new capacity.
Q. Do you support adding reversible lanes to I-75 through Cobb?
Setzler: I need more information on the specifics of the proposal.
Q. Should reversible lanes be built before or after light rail lines?
Setzler: I expect that any viable, reversible lane proposal could be implemented much more quickly than light rail.
Q. Do you plan to vote in favor of the metro Atlanta transportation SPLOST in 2012?
Setzler: If the SPLOST includes high impact projects that will provide meaningful traffic relief to Cobb citizens, yes, I will.
Q. Do you favor more restrictions on lobbyist gifts to legislators? Exactly what type of gifts and what amounts would you ban?
Setzler: In my six years in the legislature, Republican-led ethics reforms have taken Georgia from 46th place to 4th place in the nation in the toughness of our ethics in government laws.
Q. Do you favor legislation that would deny admission to state universities to all illegal immigrants, even those who graduated from a Georgia high school?
Setzler: Subsidizing illegals in our state universities makes about as much sense as someone breaking into my house, taking over the guest bedroom, and asking me to fund their education. An overwhelming majority of Georgians recognize the absurdity of this.
Q. Would you vote for an immigration law similar to the one recently passed in Arizona?
Setzler: Conditions in Georgia are very different than in Arizona. While I oppose profiling, I do believe that illegal immigrants who commit crimes should be sent home and not released back onto our streets.
Q. Do you favor a state law that would outlaw furlough days for teachers in the future?
Setzler: Furlough days should be the decision of local school boards, not the state legislature.
Q. At what point would you consider increasing taxes in Georgia?
Setzler: With more than 35 percent of our nation’s GDP already taken by government, I would not consider increas-ing state taxes.
Q. If Georgians elect a governor from a party that is not your own, do you think you can work constructively with that governor?
Setzler: Certainly — I work on a bipartisan basis at the Capitol every day.
Q. What do you think will be the biggest issue facing the General Assembly in 2011?
Setzler: Making even deeper cuts to a state budget that has already been cut to the bone.