Education should not be an accident of geography. In my professional capacity as a lawyer, I have represented communities fighting to protect public funding for schools including in the Claremont School Funding suit and currently representing the City of Dover and the Dover School District in their fight for fair school funding. If elected, I will bring this perspective to the votes I cast on appointments to the State Board of Education and State Education Commissioner as well as federal education grants to ensure New Hampshire’s children have the tools they need to compete in the marketplace of ideas, no matter where they live.
Protecting Health Care for All Granite Staters
New Hampshire is one of the healthiest and most livable states in the nation. As the strategic planning chair of the Manchester Community Health Center I know the Executive Council plays a key role in maintaining this status. Medicaid Expansion, called the NH Health Protection Program (NHHPP), is the biggest step forward to eliminate health disparities in our state in a generation. More than 40,000 hard-working New Hampshire residents are already enrolled in the program and are now guaranteed access to check-ups and preventive services, access to life-saving mental health and substance abuse services.
We must also work to restore vital funding for Planned Parenthood after the Executive Council’s extreme vote to defund these health centers across our state jeopardized thousands of New Hampshire women’s health care—including cancer screenings, well-woman visits, and birth control.
Retirement Security and Labor
As a lawyer, I represent the New Hampshire Retirement Security Coalition in their effort to protect public workers’ pensions. Appointees to the state pension system board, approved by the Executive Council, should work to protect state employees’ pension rights—not undermine them. In addition, I understand state and federal labor laws and will ask direct questions of proposed contractors to ensure compliance with our state’s labor laws and safety laws to protect New Hampshire workers and residents.
Criminal Justice Reform
The Executive Council plays a critical role in our state as champions for all of our citizens. I understand the importance of fair judges and of a strong, transparent, and well-informed process for their selection. If elected, I will ask the hard questions necessary of judicial appointees as well as appointees to the parole board and Commissioner of the Department of Corrections about their philosophies of corrections. I believe we can be more effective in dealing with crime and punishment and we should be more efficient with our tax dollars. An understanding of addiction, especially, is important because, for example, if offenders are not offered intervention other than more prison time, we will not be able to end the cycle of drug and alcohol abuse.
The Executive Council is charged with approving the state’s 10-year transportation plan, which sets a road map for transportation projects in New Hampshire including local infrastructure and commuter rail. I support a Capitol Corridor Commuter Rail Plan because it has many benefits, including: easing the commute to Boston; reducing traffic on I-93; creating local construction jobs; and bringing tourists and shoppers to New Hampshire. The Executive Council is responsible for maintaining the vitality of New Hampshire’s economy and commuter rail is an important part of that.