Jobs and the Economy
The economy is booming . . . in Seattle.
My prime focus continues to be making the Inland Northwest more business friendly and doing whatever is necessary to provide sound and sustainable family wage paying employment opportunities in our region.
I have co-sponsored and supported legislation that makes it easier for businesses to thrive in our region and do what they do best – provide good jobs.
As a retired Spokane Police Officer, I well understand the importance of public safety. A core function of government is protection of its citizens. I have sponsored and supported legislation that helps improve the safety of our citizens. We must be serious about justice in order for prison time to be effective. And when an offender has paid their debt to society, we must also make sure that they have the opportunity to start over again.
It's not often discussed, but public safety has always been a silent partner in improving our economy. People want to live and operate a business in an environment that is safe and crime free. A low crime rate and good schools are two major attractions.
During these last 10 years in the legislature, I have supported budgets that were sustainable. The focus has been to create budgets that provide for the core functions of government – maintaining infrastructure, public safety, education and protecting the most vulnerable. We need structural reform in budgeting that will result in budgets crafted within existing resources and not dependent upon increasing the tax burden on our citizens.
“It is the paramount duty of the state to make ample provision for the education of all children residing within its borders, without distinction or preference on account of race, color, caste, or sex.” – Article IX, Section I, Washington State Constitution
Every child in our state must have access to a quality education. However, those most important decisions addressing school districts should still be made at the local level by parents and school board members.
I have fought for our fair share of transportation dollars and to protect funding for the North-South corridor. Spokane county residents spend millions of dollars in gas taxes and we deserve to receive our equal share of funding for local transportation projects. Transportation and infrastructure projects that help drive our economy are always a priority.
All agree that Washington residents deserve the opportunity to access affordable quality health care. Providing such an opportunity must be economical and yet also constitutional. With the rising cost of health care, we need to explore new and innovative ways to both provide and streamline health care in our state.