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Muhlenberg School Board member running for state Senate

Getting involved in local politics was an easy decision for Miguel Vasquez.

The father of nine children — two of his own, four stepchildren and three adopted children — he felt a pull to do what he could to make their lives better. That’s why he became a member of the Muhlenberg School Board and why he serves on the Berks County Intermediate Unit’s board of directors.

And it’s why he has decided to continue his political career by pursuing a higher office.

The 44-year-old is running against Cumru Township Commissioner Lisha Rowe in the April 23 primary for the Republican nomination in the 11th Senatorial District. The winner of that race will face Democratic incumbent Judy Schwank in the fall.

“I want to leave a better place for my children,” he said. “At this point, I feel like there is a lot of work to be done, and I want to do what I can to be a part of that positive change.”

Miguel Vasquez
Miguel Vasquez

Vasquez said he believes his past political experience will be an asset at the state level, as he’s comfortable working with people from both sides of the aisle in order to make a positive impact.

“I have been really lucky with my political experience so far because all the board members — Republican or Democrat — are all in it to serve the children,” he said. “The state level will be different. But as long as the people are in it for the right reason to serve the people, it shouldn’t be much different.”

Vasquez, who described himself as being middle-of-the-road with a tilt to the right politically, said he believes compromise is the key to creating legislation that does the most good for the most people.

One of his main focuses, should he be elected, would be education.

Vasquez said he believes the state should fully fund public schools, but also that schools should be held accountable for their performance educating students. He’s a believer in school choice, he said, and feels state funding should follow students who opt to pick a school other than one in their home district.

Aside from education, Vasquez said he wants to get rid of redundancies and some overly cumbersome regulations in order to improve the efficiency of government. That’s what he does at his job as director of organizational efficiency for Apis Services in Reading, which assists nonprofit organizations to ensure care is consistently provided.

He also believes government should be more transparent. For example, he said the state budget is too complicated and difficult for the general public to fully understand.

“I feel like our lawmakers are spending without questioning the reasons behind it,” he said.

State senators serve a four-year term and receive an annual salary of $102,844.

Meet the candidate

Candidate: Miguel Vasquez, 44, Muhlenberg Township.

Position sought: State senator for the 11th District, which includes 23 municipalities in Berks County stretching from Spring Township in the southwest through Reading to Maxatawny Township in the northeast.

Current salary for position: $102,844.

Background: Vasquez is director of organizational efficiency for Apis Services in Reading, which assists nonprofit organizations to ensure care is consistently provided. He serves on the Muhlenberg School Board and Berks County Intermediate Unit Board of Directors.


Source: Berkshire mont

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