Education is a key component in bringing back our New Hampshire Advantage. First we need to restore local control of education and reject Common Core. I believe that parents, teachers, and locally elected school boards should be deciding course curriculum and setting educational goals, not federal bureaucrats. I also believe we need to give parents more choices when it comes to educating their children which is why I support the expansion of Charter Schools and homeschooling.
Further, we need to ensure that we are developing a workforce with the skills that employers need. We need to expand our community college and technical school programs, and increase vocational training in our high schools. Too many companies walk away from our state because we don’t have a workforce with the needed skills to meet their demands – we need to change that and bring those jobs to our state.
No Sales tax, no income tax. Not now, not ever. We have to be clear that New Hampshire is open for business, and the first part of that message has to be that we are working towards lowering our taxes, and not creating new ones.
In the last 20 years we have seen our New Hampshire Advantage whither away and become a distant memory as our neighboring states of Massachusetts, Maine, and even Vermont have taken actions to make their tax structure more attractive to businesses and entrepreneurs.
In addition to my steadfast opposition to a sales or income tax, I believe we need to further reduce business taxes. Last year the Republican State Senate pushed and successfully passed the first business tax cuts in decades and an amazing thing happened – businesses grew and so did tax revenue for the state. We need to make additional cuts to business taxes in order to be more competitive with our neighbors.
I am a gun owner and an NRA member. I fully support our 2nd amendment rights.
After taxes – our excessively high energy costs are the top concern of businesses that consider expanding or relocating into New Hampshire. Businesses thrive on competition, and our high energy costs put them at a disadvantage on costs, we need to take several steps to get energy costs down.
We need more energy. I support Northern Pass, and bringing clean hydroelectric power from Canada. Northern Pass is estimated to bring $80 million in annual energy cost savings, over 2,600 construction jobs, and tens of millions in state and local tax revenue. We also need to invest in energy solutions that are renewable and work like bio mass, and stop subsidizing wind and solar. Energy sources should be diverse to protect against supply market shocks.
The ever-rising cost of healthcare is a perfect example of how government intrusion results in higher costs, more regulation, and less competition. Obamacare has been a failure, and should be repealed at the federal level. Here in New Hampshire the passage of Medicaid expansion without a long-term funding solution was a mistake. We need to allow people to shop for health insurance across state lines to increase competition and consumer choice with a broad risk pool. We also need more transparency in health care so individuals can shop and compare prices for medical procedures.
Fighting the opioid and heroin epidemic
It is absolutely heartbreaking to see so many of our families being torn apart by the current drug epidemic. This is possibly one of the most complicated and emotionally charged issues that the next legislature will face.
I believe we need to fight this drug war on several fronts. First, we need to give the law enforcement community the tools and resources they need to stop the inflow of drugs from other states – as well as give them a clear directive that the primary target of their efforts should be the drug kingpins and street pushers that are directly putting the poison in the hands of our children. These dealers should be given the harshest of penalties.
Second, we need to make treatment options more available and save as many people as we can. I believe that the drug court system that has been put in place is a good step in that direction.
Along with enforcement and treatment, we need education. Heroin, Fentanyl, and prescription opioids are highly addictive, and deadly. We need to have a real discussion with our children about the dangers of these drugs and substance abuse. We need to learn more about how they are getting access to these drugs, and why they are seeking them out. If we don’t address this crisis on all fronts, we will continue to lose countless souls to overdoses.
Right To Work
I support making New Hampshire a Right To Work state. I believe in individual freedom and choice, and I believe forcing people to join a union and pay union dues is unconstitutional and runs contrary to the independent spirit of our state. Passing Right To Work legislation will also demonstrate that we are serious about attracting new businesses to our state.
Rooms and Meals (R&M) Tax reform
As a small business owner, I founded two successful hotels here in the Seacoast. I know how important the tourism and hospitality industries are to our state and to District 24. When it comes to the Rooms and Meals tax, our businesses and our communities in District 24 are generating a grossly disproportionate share of revenue for the state. We need to work towards reforming how these revenues are distributed back to the communities so we can get more of our tax revenues back to our communities to lower our tax burdens.