Republican Ralph Hise is seeking a sixth term as a North Carolina Senator serving District 47.
Hise served two years as Spruce Pine Mayor before beginning his tenure as a state senator.
Hise said if re-elected, his goals include elevating the region and promoting local economic development, lowering the tax rate and eliminating the franchise tax, limit state funding to local governments that defund their police or sheriff’s departments, raising pay for correctional officers in prisons and increasing broadband coverage.
Hise said he also hopes to help pass the SAVE Act, which would allow advanced practice registered nurses to practice at the top of their licensing and training to fill the gaps in healthcare coverage in rural areas, independent of physician supervision.
“I have a solid conservative, pro-family voting record,” Hise said. “I strongly support law and order, religious liberty, school choice and the Second Amendment.”
In addition to his role as a state senator, Hise works at Mayland Community College. He has a wife (Linn) and twin sons, Deren and Thomas, who are seventh-graders at Harris Middle School.
Hise attended graduate school at North Carolina State University and previously worked as a statistician at the United States Census Bureau.
Hise enjoys trout fishing, science fiction and is a founding member of the Appalachian State Mountaineer Maniacs.
Democrat David Wheeler is challenging Republican Ralph Hise for a second time, but he hopes this time will be different.
Wheeler said two of his top priorities are expanding both broadband coverage and low cost, high quality healthcare for everyone in Mitchell County.
“It is time we stopped delaying both of these essential services,” he said. “I’ll work my tail off to get both for everyone.”
Wheeler also hopes to change the method of funding rural schools and teacher pay and end gerrymandering of elected officials’ districts with an independent commission.
Wheeler has helped Country Cablevision provide fiber internet to more than 1,000 homes by working with Duke Energy and others to eliminate pole hanging fees. Wheeler was also recently endorsed by the North Carolina Association of Educators.
Wheeler said he feels Hise should be held accountable for campaigning (including social media posts, making phone calls and more) during his time on the clock at Mayland Community College.
Wheeler enjoys fishing with his kids and working outdoors and has been working for himself since he was 24.
“I’m running because we can do better,” Wheeler said. “I’m certainly not perfect but I’m a moderate, small business Democrat that shares many of your views on issues. For example. I’m for the Second Amendment and personally against abortion.”