Treasurer Frank Caprio, Democratic Party candidate for governor, spoke with The Herald following Thursday's gubernatorial debate.
The Herald: How do you plan on working with students from Brown and other colleges in Rhode Island?
Frank Caprio: I look forward to working with college students. I'm only a few years out of college myself, and most of my campaign staff is either in college or grad school, so I feel very connected to the college community and look forward to having them as a big voice going forward.
One issue Brown students care a lot about is the environment. How do you plan to address this issue if elected governor?
I have a pretty detailed green energy plan up on my website. I think we're the size of state where we can be one of the first states to be more dependent on alternative energy. We don't need the old-fashioned way to be the way going forward. I'd like to see the offshore wind project get implemented, I'd like Rhode Island to be a hub for those jobs. We're perfectly situated on the East Coast to supply the region with the technology and the goods for that. I'm very optimistic about where Rhode Island stands in terms of Green Energy.
Another issue students are passionate about is campaign finance reform. Would you support a fair elections bill here in Rhode Island?
I'm a supporter of what's been done in other states, where you have a process that you raise a certain amount of money in small donations from a certain number of people, and can then get a larger amount and have an even playing field for everybody. That's something I have supported as a state legislator and I would support it as Governor.
What do you think needs to be done to keep college graduates from leaving the state?
It's about having an economic plan that works. We can't have high taxes. We can't have a plan that drives out the people that create jobs. So we have to hold the line on taxes. We need to look at the capital gains tax and the estate tax. We can't be an outlier on the graph. I've been saying that throughout this campaign. Those taxes don't bring in a lot of money. They're a rounding error when you talk about the size of our budget. We could differentiate ourself from the region if we eliminated those taxes with a 3-5 year plan. That's what I'd like to see happen. We have to keep the job creators here in Rhode Island, and that will create opportunities for students coming out of school.