Helping Working Families
Income Tax: Why do we tax investment income less than income earned by people who actually GO TO WORK to earn it? Why is it so complicated to figure out what our tax brackets are? Why do businesses get so many write offs and middle class families have to meet strict income limitations for the many tax credits we have available?
Jobs: What have our representatives done to bring sustainable, multi-generational jobs with good benefits and a bright future to our area? How can we keep our kids and grandkids in our communities with good employment and opportunities to succeed? Why do our young people consider a rural life to be a dead end? We need solutions in place that help leverage public buying power for the betterment of all of our lives. We need to support our family farms and provide incentives to protect their ability to be profitable and dignified.
Unions: I support unions and the work they do to protect ALL workers. I support upholding our commitments to our public and private sector employees.
Police and Teachers: Our police and teachers take lower paying jobs in exchange for the public service commitment and values they hold. We should be upholding our end of the bargain.
Licensing standards: I am a highly licensed professional. And I know that my industry suffers when someone just hangs up a shingle and gives themselves a title. Do you want your financial advisor to be held to lower standards? If not, then why would you be ok with your kids' teachers or the contractor building the roof that keeps those kids safe to be held to low standards? It doesn't make sense and we have to continue to support requiring licensing and high standards for our working families.
Prevailing Wage, Right to Work, Wage Theft: We must support prevailing wage requirements for any projects that require any source of public funding, whether that is municipal or state. It is essential that we aren't just picking the cheapest option, but the best option in terms of quality and safety. We don't need our tax dollars funding a fly by night company.
We must be better than our neighbors to the east, and not allow "Right to Work" legislation to find a home in our state. Its more like "Right to Work More for Less". Track Records for Right to Work states include increased poverty and a decrease of skilled workers.
Wage theft must stop in all of its forms. This includes; taking hourly employees and giving them a "promotion" to a "manager" level position that just takes away overtime pay and add responsibilities, putting this week's hours on next week's paycard, and other abusive techniques to take wages from hardworking families.
Student Debt: I have helped a lot of people get their arms around their debt and budgeting. Student loan debt shouldn't be treated worse than a boat or automobile loan. We should be considering options for high demand careers in this state, like education, nursing, and the trades and how we can financially encourage students to enter those fields and stay here in MN to do the work.
Myth-busters, Jess style: Traditional college degrees are not necessary for success and are sometimes a hindrance. I support 2 years free community and tech training for all students who are willing to succeed.
School Safety: Our students shouldn't have to be rehearsing for their deaths. We need to put our focus on reducing violence in our schools. This requires data, common sense gun control, and fully funded support for facilities maintenance to create safe spaces for our children to learn. The issue of gun violence is intricately tied to many other issues, some of which stem from home life. I support stronger penalties for domestic abuse cases and limited access to firearms for those among us willing to hurt the ones closest to our hearts. I am open to hearing all opinions on this matter and will consult with experts before voting on any legislation that impacts our children's safety or gun owner rights. I am a gunowner and participate in both shooting sports and hunting. I think there is a world of compromise to be discovered and explored.
Our Minnesota Infrastructure
- Broadband: We need a real investment into high speed internet across the state. In today's economy, small business owners need access to the resources and customer bases that can only be found online. Not to mention the opportunity that it gives students seeking to expand their knowledge through online resources. The Internet is an investment we can't afford to miss out on in any part of the state.
- Environment: We need infrastructure that is ready for the future, which means moving to renewable resources and smart power-grids. Not only is clean energy better for the environment, but it is safer for our communities. However, we must make that transition work for the working families that are currently employed in this industry. We may need to allocate state dollars for training and opportunity to these communities. We also must support the unionization of renewable energy providers.
- Trains: As a former Northstar rider, who relocated my family to Becker in order to work in Minneapolis, I believe we should be finishing the Northstar. I know so many families in our area where one or both parents are commuting to the metro for work. I believe getting the Northstar finished will open up employment and quality of life options for so many of our citizens and make staying in central MN much more attractive to our children.
- Single Payer Healthcare: Healthcare vs. Health Payment Systems. Lets talk about how we pay first. My experience in the insurance industry has taught me two things: the consumer benefits when the insurance pool is big and diverse and the insurance companies benefit when they can complicate and separate us. We need a healthcare payment and delivery system that works for everybody. This is our opportunity as a state to lead, to save money, and to save lives all at the same time. We cannot allow insurance companies to continue to profit off of the sick while hardworking Americans watch their life savings disappear from a random, unpredictable medical issue. This is the single most important issue that impacts ALL Minnesotans. The working families from Benton, Sherburne, Wright, and Morrison counties deserve an advocate in St. Paul instead of being abandoned by politicians who would rather watch us all have to set up gofundme accounts.
- Healthcare is a human right. This shouldn't be a consumer issue because health care patients rarely have a CHOICE. We don't choose cancer and most folks around here can't afford it. The last thing a family should have to be considering when they are sick is a bankruptcy or a divorce just to keep their home.
- End of Life Palliative Care: I believe that Minnesotans should be able to die peacefully and with dignity. I would work with our nurses, hospice providers, and medical professionals to find a way to help make that happen.