Public education is under attack in West Virginia, from students, to teachers to curriculum. Education is the key to many other issues, including economic development, jobs, the opioid crisis, among others. We must value public education again in West Virginia and commit to bolstering our education system, supporting and providing resources to our schools, teachers and students.
The economic impact of our crumbling infrastructure is unparalleled and it continues to rise year after year. Our country’s infrastructure was once the envy of the world, but lack of funding has allowed it to fall apart and now we’re lagging behind. Today West Virginians drive on some of the worst roads and bridges in the country to get to work. Many of our students are in buildings that are unsafe and lack the technological needs of a 21st century education. We can and must do better for the people of West Virginia.
In 2022, we still have West Virginia families that don’t have access to reliable high-speed internet. It’s time for Charleston to realize that access to affordable and reliable high-speed internet is no longer a luxury, it’s a necessity for commerce, education, healthcare and public safety. Quality internet can unlock our state’s full potential and help rural areas attract new businesses. It’s time to close the rural-urban divide and build out broadband infrastructure to unserved and underserved counties in our state.
FUNDING FOR SENIOR SERVICES
Over 20% of our state’s population is 65 years old or older. Unfortunately, many of our seniors are struggling to stay afloat and lack the basic freedoms and quality of life they desire. I believe that we have a moral responsibility to ensure that all West Virginians have the support and services they need to live in their own home and to age with dignity.
The safety of our drinking water should never be in question. Yet families all across West Virginia cannot trust the water coming into their homes because of industry pollution and lack of infrastructure investment. It’s time to act and treat this issue with the attention it needs. As your senator, I’ll fight to invest in our water infrastructure and hold companies accountable when they’ve irresponsibly stored and dumped hazardous waste near our waterways.
COMBATING OPIOD CRISIS
West Virginia continues to lead the country in opioid related deaths and far too many of our children are without their parents. It’s imperative to our future that we create a new plan of action to tackle the opioid crisis from all angles, including enforcement, treatment, prevention, recovery and re-entry. We must also hold the pharmaceutical companies accountable who have deliberately misled and concealed information to create this crisis.
PROTECTING PROPERTY RIGHTS
In West Virginia, we understand that private property is the foundation of prosperity and true freedom. The idea of forcing co-tenancy is wrong for our state. We have always supported the rights of landowners from encroachment from out-of-state interests. This should continue with as little change as possible.