Biello plans to use candidacy as teaching lesson
by Joshua Sharpe
January 31, 2014 11:00 PM | 3588 views | 7 7 comments | 27 27 recommendations | email to a friend | print
 District 22 state House candidate Megan Biello answers emails at her home office Friday.
District 22 state House candidate Megan Biello answers emails at her home office Friday.
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Meagan Biello calls her bid for the District 22 seat in the state House the “best civics lesson” she could ever give to the students she teaches economics and history at Creekview High School.

“For years, I’ve been telling kids, ‘If you don’t like the way government is, get involved,’” said Biello, who is running against Sam Moore in a runoff for the seat Tuesday. “And I thought, really, I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t get involved. This opportunity just seemed so perfect. Little did we know that four people were going to announce.”

Biello, 32, a Woodstock native and Ball Ground resident, is squaring off against Moore in the runoff after neither of them could pull in more than half the votes in a four-candidate race Jan. 7. Biello took home 24 percent of the vote, edging out third-place candidate Jeff Duncan by just two votes.

As she prepares for yet another election day, Biello feels she can be an asset to district in the state House, should the voters chose her to replace the late state Rep. Calvin Hill (R-Canton), who died in late October of leukemia.

“I have true conservative values, I will stand up for families, I will stand up for education, I will fight to maintain a strong economy,” Biello said. “Being a mother, being an educator, I have a vested interest in this community. I want to make sure there is something there for my children when they’re older.”

Biello lives in Ball Ground with her husband, Alex, who is the son of former County Commissioner J.J. Biello, and their two children, Ethan, 6, Walker, 4. A graduate of the University of Georgia and Georgia State University, she has been a teacher for eight years, with the last seven of those years being in her native Cherokee County.

Although she works at a public school, Biello said she supports school choice, because “I think parents know their children best.”

When asked where she stood on the controversial Common Core Standards, Biello said her classes weren’t really affected by the standards, but some of her colleagues have remarked on how they have impacted their teaching methods.

Biello said there may be an alternative to Common Core, but she warned of the costs associated with changing the standards again.

“I’ve only been teaching eight years and our standards in Georgia have changed three times. I think every time we change there’s a cost associated with that,” she said. “At what point are we going to stop spinning our wheels? It’s going to become cost prohibitive to change, and if we’re going to move away from Common Core, we need to figure out what that is first. Don’t just say scrap it, because we don’t like it.”

But despite her career in education, Biello said the most important issue to her in the race is the economy, although education does play a part in that.

“I have children, so I feel like I have a vested interest in making sure this remains the county in which people like to do business, where people like to live and where people like to send their children to school,” she said. “Education plays a key component in that ... I think we need to make sure that we’re preparing our students to join the workforce and not just go to college. I am an advocate for alternative tracks, work-ready tracks, because not every child is meant to, or capable of, going to college.”

Although Biello has firm roots in Cherokee County and a stake in what the future holds, she said she won’t have any problem representing other District 22 residents in parts of Forysth and Fulton counties.

“The best thing about me? I’m a great listener,” she said. “I’m willing to listen to people, see what their needs are, see what the issues are that they feel are important to their area of the district and take that to the delegation.”

Biello said she also won’t have problems getting things done in 2014, although whoever wins the District 22 race will be thrown into the legislative session that has already been underway for weeks.

“I’ve already been following certain pieces of legislation and been in communication with other legislators,” she said. “I may not go down there and be this sole renegade changing everything, but I think I’m going to know enough to contribute meaningfully.”

One bill she’s been following is the Health Care Freedom and ACA Non-Compliance Act, which is being pushed by local Reps. Scot Turner (R-Holly Springs) and Michael Caldwell (R-Woodstock) and would bar Georgia from using state resources to implement the Affordable Care Act.

“I think that’s a step in the right direction for Georgia,” Biello said.

Whoever comes out on top Tuesday will also see their term in office expire quickly, as they are finishing out Hill’s term.

Biello said even if she loses Tuesday, that won’t be the last District 22 hears from her, and she plans to run for the seat again in the May primary either way.

“That is the plan,” she said. “I feel like I’m the best person for the job. I think I am an asset to District 22, Cherokee County. I don’t want to give up on that just because we don’t win the first time. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

Comments
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Taxed_To_Death
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February 12, 2014
Almost all of those wanting Common Core are education related. And of those they have been running our education system for generations. Now, all of a sudden they want a NEW plan.

What have they been doing "right" that now needs fixing?
Jack Staver
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February 02, 2014
Isn't there 2 candidates in the HD22 race? I think you mentioned his name in the second and third paragraph. Why don't you show unbiased reporting? Is that a policy of the paper that you only show one side? Please get your act together and do real, fair unbiased reporting, your readers deserve that.
ReasonableCitizen
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February 03, 2014
Both articles rolled out at the same time. If you are prepared to lie about something as readily apparent as that, I question both your honesty on other issues and your capacity to let new information influence your 'understanding.'
Andy123456789
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February 02, 2014
I'd like to hear more about the front runner, Sam Moore. This article is pretty complimentary. Do you plan to run a similar article on the Moore campaign?
ReasonableCitizen
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February 03, 2014
Both articles rolled simultaneously. The poor Sam Moore victimization campaign amidst his many threats is hilarious.
Steve Morris
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February 02, 2014
Mrs. Biello is a pretty personable woman, but I don't believe she is the right person for this job. A couple concerns.

Common Core. She is an advocate of Common Core (A Centrally Planned Education Scheme) while at the same time being an Economics Teacher. I find it difficult to imagine that an Advocate of Centrally Planned Education being anything other than an Advocate of Centrally Planned Economies and People. "Just don't scrap it because we don't like it."??? I'm curious who Biello thinks she is representing, the School System or those who pay for it?

Secondly HB 707 (ACA Non-Compliance Act) is not an Act in the Action sense, but rather an Act as in Pretending to do something through Inaction.

What does HB707 do to allow/promote Georgia Insurance Underwriters to offer policies where a Man can buy coverage without Maternity, or a Woman without Abortion Coverage? NOTHING!

In what manner does 707 give the Insurance Commission of GEORGIA the ability to protect our Citizens' contracts and promote competitive Insurance Carriers??? It does NOTHING. With all due respect, how does an Econ Teacher not know this???

What HB707 does is encourage the Feds to find an end-around that pushes more and more people into the Single Payer Medicaid and Medicare Programs that leaves the States in the Unenviable position of either picking up the Bill for an expanded Welfare System, or taking the heat for not picking up the Bill.

Sticking ones head in the sand on the ACA is like forcing most Georgians to Bend Over and HOPE the Obama Admin doesn't stick it to us again. "Hey, the Feds are going to DESTROY the Health Care options in Georgia, but at least we aren't going to help them." What does the Preamble of the Georgia Constitution say about that?

Sam Moore understands that LOCAL control of Education and Healthcare is the right thing for Georgians. He's not afraid to represent D22 by Standing UP to Central Planners, not standing Aside.

Sorry Megan, you're nice, but Georgia doesn't need nice, we need Advocates for Decentralized Planning and Locally controlled Education.
ReasonableCitizen
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February 03, 2014
An actual argument about issues is appreciated. Though I want to counter with some points.

The Common Core fervor can be distilled down to scare tactics from the fringe. It was neither federally written, nor federally mandated. It was written by the states together (as a confederation as opposed to a unilateral mandate). Georgia opted in to it. Were it not for the anti-public education cabal that is the Georgia state legislature our school systems would not be so starved for funds that we need those Race to the Top Dollars.

With all due respect, taking the strongest stance currently available against the ACA-which candidate Biello apparently opposes-is supporting 707. What is she supposed to do as a candidate?

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