Issues

Blaze 120

Economy and Jobs

To improve the state's economy and create jobs, we need to take advantage of Rhode Island's untapped potential. First, by recruiting, retaining, and reinvesting in local talent and local innovation, our economy can put money in the hands of people who will spend it here. Second, by cutting through the bureaucratic red tape, Rhode Island can take advantage of its size to make running a small business easier. Third, by focusing on green and clean technology jobs – such as solar, water, and wind energy, design, and manufacturing – we can harness our state's sustainable, natural resources while creating professional and working-class jobs that provide career paths, excellent wages, and a boost to our economy. If we take advantage of Rhode Island's untapped potential, we can grow a stronger economy for working families and create good paying jobs for all Rhode Islanders.

Education and Schools

To improve our public education system, we need to continue to fix the way we fund our schools. Rhode Island education funding structure is inadequate to provide a high quality public education to its students. This has forced cities and towns to raise property taxes and pick up an unfair share of education costs, which has hit homeowners and renters very hard, particularly in communities like Providence. I will fight to fix the way we fund our public education system, which will both improve schools and provide property tax relief. I will work to save resources by consolidating services to bring tax relief for Rhode Islanders. I will also fight to make sure that every student has an equal opportunity for a high quality public education in our state.

Environment and Public Waterfront

To protect our environment and neighborhood, I support the development of robust renewable energy, better public transit, and improved open spaces. First, I will work to promote the creation a modern public transit system connecting Providence with the rest of Rhode Island because public transportation improves the quality of our environment, reduces traffic and congestion, and protects our open and public spaces. Second, I will also advocate to make Rhode Island a leader in alternative energy use as well as in the design, manufacturing, and implementation of green and clean technology in the fields of water, wind, solar, and geothermal energy. Third, I will fight to preserve and protect our open and public spaces. We need to continue to work to create a vibrant public waterfront – the signature of a great city -- with a deepwater port that could become the necessary maritime link to other modes of transportation and become an engine of job creation for Rhode Islanders.  Through public transportation and alternative energy, I will work to grow green and clean technology jobs while protecting our environment.

Taxes

Rhode Island's tax structure is broken. Our state currently taxes its residents regressively, meaning the less money you have, the greater percentage of your income you pay in taxes. Year after year, the state has cut services and aid while passing the buck to the cities and towns. For example, since the state does not pay its fair share of education costs, it forces cities and towns to raise property taxes, which has hit homeowners and renters very hard, particularly in communities like Providence. I will fight to fix the way we fund our public education system, which will both improve schools and provide property tax relief. I will also fight to save resources by consolidating services to bring property tax relief for Rhode Islanders.

Healthcare

For too long, the solution to our healthcare crisis has been to slash funding. These cuts have hit seniors and children the hardest. I will stand up to further cuts to our healthcare system and work to protect and preserve healthcare coverage through the Affordable Care Act.  I will also fight to ensure that healthcare facilities have sufficient staffing and funding to provide high-quality care to seniors, children, and all Rhode Islanders. I will also continue to work to provide increased funding to Meals-on-Wheels and home respite care services for seniors.

Housing

I am an advocate for creating affordable housing and for fighting the predatory lending practices that have helped create the foreclosure crisis in Rhode Island. A major issue in our state has been that hundreds of renters in foreclosed properties were kicked out of their homes due to no fault of their own, often with little advance notice. I am proud to have pushed for a policy that will put a freeze on evictions of renters in foreclosed properties. I also proud to have worked to create the first-in-the-nation Homeless Bill of Rights to prevent discrimination on the basis of housing status.

Civil Rights and Civil Liberties

I am committed to promoting and protecting civil rights and civil liberties for all Rhode Islanders. I will fight to protect a woman's right to choose from new right-wing attacks. I will fight to ensure that everyone – no matter who his or her partner is – can enjoy the security that marriage brings. I will fight discrimination by those who may try to treat immigrants unfairly or deprive the rights of anyone in our diverse neighborhood.


For information on current legislation or to track bills in Rhode Island, please click here.

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Economy and Jobs

To improve the state’s economy and create jobs, we need to take advantage of Rhode Island's untapped potential.  First, by recruiting, retaining, and reinvesting in local talent and local innovation, our economy can put money in the hands of people who will spend it here.  Second, by cutting through the bureaucratic red tape, Rhode Island can take advantage of its size to make running a small business easier.  Third, by focusing on green and clean technology jobs – such as solar, water, and wind energy, design, and manufacturing – we can harness our state’s sustainable, natural resources while creating professional and working-class jobs that provide career paths, excellent wages, and a boost to our economy.  If we take advantage of Rhode Island’s untapped potential, we can grow a stronger economy for working families and create good paying jobs for all Rhode Islanders. 

 

Education and Schools

To improve our public education system, we need to fix the way we fund our schools. Rhode Island education funding structure is inadequate to provide a high quality public education to its students.  While most states provide for 2/3 of school funding, Rhode Island has only covered 1/3.  This has forced cities and towns to raise property taxes and pick up an unfair share of education costs, which has hit homeowners and renters very hard, particularly in communities like Providence and East Providence.  While a new education bill recently passed, it did not go far enough to support Providence and East Providence.  I will fight to fix the way we fund our public education system, which will both improve schools and provide property tax relief.  I will also fight to save resources by consolidating services to bring tax relief for Rhode Islanders.   

Environment and Public Waterfront

To protect our environment and neighborhood, I support the development of robust renewable energy, better public transit, and improved open spaces.  First, I will work to promote the creation a modern public transit system connecting Providence and East Providence with the rest of Rhode Island because public transportation improves the quality of our environment, reduces traffic and congestion, and protects our open and public spaces.  Second, I will also advocate to make Rhode Island a leader in alternative energy use as well as in the design, manufacturing, and implementation of green and clean technology in the fields of water, wind, solar, and geothermal energy.  Third, I will fight to preserve and protect our open and public spaces.  For example. the old Shooters site near India Point Park offers an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the city and state to create a vibrant public waterfront – the signature of a great city.  Its deepwater port could become the necessary maritime link to other modes of transportation and become an engine of job creation for Rhode Islanders.  Through public transportation and alternative energy, I will work to grow green and clean technology jobs while protecting our environment. 

Taxes

 

Rhode Island’s tax structure is broken.  Our state currently taxes its residents regressively, meaning the less money you have, the greater percentage of your income you pay in taxes.  Year after year, the state has cut services and aid while passing the buck to the cities and towns.  For example, since the state does not pay its fair share of education costs, it forces cities and towns to raise property taxes, which has hit homeowners and renters very hard, particularly in communities like Providence and East Providence.  I will fight to fix the way we fund our public education system, which will both improve schools and provide property tax relief.  I will also fight to save resources by consolidating services to bring property tax relief for Rhode Islanders.   

 

Healthcare

 

For the past eight years, Governor Carcieri’s solution to our healthcare crisis has been to slash funding. These cuts have hit seniors and children the hardest.  I will stand up to further cuts to our healthcare system and work to rollback millions of dollars in tax breaks given to the wealthiest 5%.  I will also fight to ensure that health care facilities have sufficient staffing and funding to provide high-quality care to seniors, children, and all Rhode Islanders.  I will also work to secure continued funding of long-term care, state Social Security payments, and the Rhode Island Works program.

 

Housing

 

I am an advocate for creating affordable housing and for fighting the predatory lending practices that have helped create the foreclosure crisis in Rhode Island.  A major issue in our state is that hundreds of renters in foreclosed properties are being kicked out of their homes due to no fault of their own, often with little advance notice. I will push for a policy that will put a freeze on evictions of renters in foreclosed properties.  I also will fight to expedite permitting for affordable housing, reign in housing speculation, and push for increased funding of the Neighborhood Opportunities Program.

 

Civil Rights and Civil Liberties

 

I am committed to promoting and protecting civil rights and civil liberties for all Rhode Islanders.  I will fight to protect a woman’s right to choose from new right-wing attacks.  I will fight to ensure that everyone – no matter who his or her partner is – can enjoy the security that marriage brings.  I will fight discrimination by those who may try to treat immigrants unfairly or deprive the rights of anyone in our diverse neighborhood.