We need to grow our economy by helping Arizonans gain the skills necessary to be competitive in the 21st century. We also need to work together to make common-sense improvements to our infrastructure, such as with transportation. Businesses lose money every year due to the antiquated systems that they are forced to use for the delivery of their products. Let’s help our economy by investing in transportation and other local projects, all of which are necessary for building a strong community.
However, investing in infrastructure is not enough. We must also work to make Arizona attractive to employers seeking to relocate their business. Establishing an environment which fosters innovation and growth will help to diversify our economy, creating better and more varied professional opportunities for all of us. Education is key to making our economy attractive to employers and entrepreneurs alike.
I believe that a robust and fully funded public education system creates better economic opportunities for students and employers. To help students determine their passions and interests, our schools’ curriculum should be as broad as possible and should seek to include as many elective courses as possible. Also, to have great schools, we need great teachers. To attract and retain quality educators, each must and should be respected for the critical role they play in our communities. Compensation for our teachers should reflect the value we place on their role in creating a better future for the next generation of Arizonans.
Restoring JTED funding from previous Republican budget cuts was the first step towards rebuilding our educational system. These programs provide career and technical education for students, which in turn provide concrete employment opportunities for students entering the local work force. In a fragile economy, preparing the next generation with marketable skills is not only a responsible, but necessary policy- one which helps to move Arizona forward.
I believe local jurisdictions should be able to set their own priorities, and that the will of the voters should be respected by the state. Your voice as a voter- and not the Legislature’s- should be the last word on local policy.
Every city requires different resources to build a stable environment. Preventing the politicians at the State Capitol from dictating our values to us is one of my core principles, and one for which I am fighting tirelessly in our Legislature.