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As a parent and grandparent, I have seen firsthand the rapid decline of our Nevada education system. Nevada Schools have failed to meet the learning and developmental needs of our children. Wishing for a better solution without first embracing commonsense change, is futile.
Increased funding for schools will not solve the current state of the public education system. If money were the solution, the problem would have been solved long ago. Supporting school vouchers provides a greater degree of freedom by allowing parents to choose the best school for their son or daughter, instead of being forced into a particular school based upon a political boundary. We should also be looking for best practices from States who are ranked at the top of the list rather than continuing the same failed practices that keep Nevada at the bottom.
Veterans are the very heart of what makes America beat. Honoring their sacrifice made for our country and for Nevada means supporting all aspects of their lives to include their mental health. Over 200,000 veterans reside in Nevada, and sadly we have the 11th highest suicide rate in the nation with 23% of all suicides in our State by veterans.
Supporting expanded health services, to include better access to mental health facilities for Veterans is a priority for me. A targeted focus for rural communities must be at the forefront since they have experienced higher suicide rates throughout Nevada. There are over 6,000 veterans living in AD31. It will be one of my priorities as your Assemblywoman to promote legislation ensuring there is a strong collaborative relationship between the State of Nevada and the US Department of Veteran Affairs specifically targeting veteran mental health issues.
The reckless, and in some cases illegal, tax and spend initiatives by the majority party of our current State Legislature is eroding the economic health and welfare of our citizens and businesses in Nevada. I have witnessed firsthand how these policies have hurt the citizens of AD31 and our State. I have had conversations with citizens from all political stripes and the vast majority have the perception that accountability for and openness about how our tax dollars are spent does not exist.
I will make it my goal to fight for the citizens of Nevada and oppose any and all new taxes, especially an income tax and additional sales taxes. Sales taxes are regressive in nature and place a greater burden on the middle class and the poor. AD 31 is a solid middle class district. With housing and other subsistence costs as high as they are, we cannot afford higher taxes, especially if they are earmarked for programs that are already well funded yet still failing. If our community and our State are to remain strong, we need to fix the system before we ask our hard working citizens to sacrifice any further.