We need the per pupil funding formula reconfigured in order to increase school funding, we cannot continue to be last in the nation for funding. An investment in our education system will result in one of the best return on investments that can be made. Education, the economy, and criminal justice all socially linked. A strong, premier education system can result in a stronger economy while reducing crime and the burden on the criminal justice system. Increased funding creates the environment most conducive for academic and social growth. Oversized classrooms and lack of resources has plagued the district for too long. Teachers need relevant, effective resources provided by the district. Our students need expanded career and technical programming and access to quality programs including the Arts, extra-curricular activities, after school programming and career exploration. I support reducing the excessive amount of standardized testing and data collection our students are subjected to throughout the year. Students need more time to develop academically and socially. We need to increase the number of social workers, counselors, and mental health providers in our school to holistically address our students’ needs. Futhermore, the national teacher shortage has had a huge impact on Nevada. Teachers and staff need to earn competitive wages with professional respect and working conditions that attract and retain our most qualified, passionate teachers.
Economy / Employment / Jobs
We can do more to attract diverse, sustainable industries that can withstand market fluctuations. Nevada can prove to be a lucrative place for businesses. However, I want to ensure that our Nevadans are the first hired. Our state needs to keep up with future trends by creating jobs in renewable energy, science, and technology. In addition to job creation, we need a prepared workforce that is equipped with the required skills to obtain and perform such jobs. In addition to working with the K-12 and Community College system, we also need to provide skilled trade opportunities, and small business loans that are accessible and attainable to our community members. Ultimately, I believe that our economy is the strongest when both our small business owners and unions are supported and thriving. However, regardless of the profession or work, our hard working Nevadans need and deserve to make a living wage.
Veterans and Military Families
I honor our Veterans and seek to ensure that they are able to obtain the services and benefits they are entitled. I will fight for the Veterans that fought for me! Veterans make up over 10% of our state population; Therefore, Nevada has the opportunity to become the premier community for Veterans and Military Families. We must continue to strive for and improve access to quality affordable housing, education / training programs, employment services, physical and mental health services, Veterans' courts, and financial protections that are quickly accessible.
Criminal Justice / Public Safety
The safety and well-being of our families, neighborhoods, and businesses are a priority. Burglaries, home invasions, and homicide are rising at a startling rate. This can be reduced with neighborhood organizing, a stronger economy, more mental health services, and increased police presence. We need to repair relationships between the police and minorities communities. I support Community Policing that works in partnership with the community. We cannot allow prison to be a profitable industry while it serves to dismantle families and communities. I support reforming sentencing guidelines, and expanding drug courts, veteran’s courts, and prisoner re-entry programs.
Health Care should be treated as a right, not as a privilege or a product for profit. Premiums have skyrocketed. This may work well for CEOs but not patients. Millions of Americans do not have access to the most basic preventative and primary care. One barrier to securing health care is the lack of accessible, affordable health insurance. From its inception in 1965, Medicaid was enacted to provide medical coverage to low-income individuals in all states and U.S. territories. Under federal regulation and with federal assistance, states were mandated to cover specific groups within our population such as low-income families and pregnant women and children. Imagine a Medicaid expansion that could provide coverage to all Nevadans. One that would give every Nevadan an opportunity to purchase Medicaid on the insurance market. An expansion that removes the income limits for eligibility for Medicaid. One that would create more options for patients in counties where they currently only have one option for health insurance—instead of allowing companies to drive up costs and take the power away from patients.
While the argument of what the size, scope, and purpose of government should be in our lives continues, one point everyone agrees on is government accountability. Government should be working for the people. In other words, we should demand effective, efficient, accountable, and transparent government. I will continue to pursue the creation of the Office of the Inspector General in order to monitor state and public entities in Nevada. As taxpayers, we need to know how our hard-earned money is being spent and that it is spent in the best intention of providing necessary and quality service to Nevadans.