Arizona is finally showing some signs of a weak economic recovery. The recent serious recession with all of its unfortunate consequences caused our state to face an unprecedented 3 billion dollar deficit. Although the gap has been closed, and the state now has a positive cash balance, I believe it would be foolish to return to the reckless spending of the past. I will always be a strong advocate for responsible spending and better financial planning for the future.
Like you, I have friends and neighbors that have lost their jobs and homes. A contributing factor to our economic crisis came from the reckless spending on unnecessary programs. While I am concerned about wasteful spending, it is important that we provide vital services to the people of Arizona. We want a prosperous state that has a high quality of life without unwise spending by elected officials. Responsible policies and wise spending of our resources will lead to more job creation and economic prosperity for everyone.
In light of my own educational opportunities, I have seen firsthand the benefits that a good education can make in a person’s life. Research shows that the more education a person receives the less likely they are to commit crime, use drugs, or otherwise engage in abusive or harmful behavior. As a result, education is a key to building strong individuals, families, and communities.
While in the legislature I have worked to help pass reforms that will direct more money to the classroom. We must allow our schools to attract the best and brightest teachers. These reforms reward teachers in accordance with their merit and skills, and additionally provide parents with the flexibility needed to choose the best educational opportunities for their children. Education is what builds the foundation for our future; we must continue working until Arizona’s education system is one the best in the country.
Nothing is more important than the safety of individuals and families in our communities. Recent violent crimes and other criminal activity in our communities remind us all that the number one obligation of government is to protect our homes and families from the predators in today’s world. This requires vigilance and a commitment to bring to justice those who break the law. We must have adequate police, fire and emergency services in order to stop crime of all kinds from plaguing our communities.
I have worked closely with law enforcement to ensure that we adopt laws and policies that assist them in doing their jobs to protect our communities. I am committed to providing the adequate funding needed to enforce our laws and keep every neighborhood safe.