SHIPPENSBURG, Pa.—A former public schoolteacher has announced her intentions to run for Pennsylvania's 33rd Senate District.
Susan Spicka of Shippensburg plans to run for the Senate seat that serves portions of Cumberland, Franklin, Adams and York counties.
In a news release, Spicka, 41, said she has been spending time talking to residents from across the four-county district and listening to their concerns as she weighs her first run for political office. With district boundaries changing for 2012, Spicka said she feels there is an opportunity for change and now is the ideal time to run.
"There are nearly half a million people in Pennsylvania unable to find work. Our roads and bridges are in desperate need of repair," Spicka said in the release.
She said public schools are "cutting programs and laying off teachers in response to declining tax revenues and the governor's budget that cut $961 million from public education."
Families are struggling to pay for college as state support for public universities dwindles and tuition rises, Spicka said.
"The natural-gas companies are making millions off our state's natural resources, but leaving taxpayers and local communities with the bill to clean up the mess," Spicka said.
Spicka said she never planned to be a politician, but wants to serve her community, neighbors and next generation.
"I may not be a professional politician, but I think I could bring some common sense to state government. I believe it is time for a change in Harrisburg," she said.
In 2011, Spicka, who is married with two daughters, was one of the co-founders of Education Matters in the Cumberland Valley, an organization of parents and community members who came together to raise awareness about how public policy affects public education and to encourage community members to support public schools.
"As a first-time candidate, I know it might be an uphill battle, but if I could get even half the votes of people in the district who are fed up with shenanigans and misguided priorities of the politicians in Harrisburg, I know I would win in a landslide," Spicka said.
Spicka plans to hold campaign launch events and to begin circulating petitions later this month.
Anyone interested in more information about Spicka's campaign can send an email to email@example.com.