Are you better off now than you were 10 years ago?
At a time when the rest many parts of the country are seeing economic boom times our district is wrestling with near 15% unemployment. Securing a bright future for our families means fighting to see change in our district right now. The millennial generation is the first generation in American history that is doing worse than their parents’ generation.
We have to ask ourselves: have we been represented in Washington D.C. by a person who has helped move the needle for our kids, for our parents, or for us?
Regardless of party, there are issues we all agree on:
- We need a strong economy to provide jobs for us now and for our kids down the road
- We need healthy families and access to healthcare so we can be strong and healthy to provide for our loved ones
- We need to protect our water, forests, and the natural beauty around us because this land provides for us and we feel an obligation to be responsible stewards of the land
- We want the best education possible to ensure a bright future for our children
- We need a 21st century infrastructure for our safety, economic development, and to support the preservation of our natural resources
- We need to reform our tax codes and regulations to guarantee a fair and equitable playing field for small businesses and our families
We all want and need health care. Nearly all of our 360 million neighbors agree on this.
At no point since 2010 has the Affordable Care Act (aka “ObamaCare”) been more popular among Americans. While the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is far from perfect, now that we have it, most Americans want to keep it and make it better. Even in the reddest of red states our neighbors know that repealing and replacing the ACA will be detrimental to their communities and to themselves.
Do we need to fix the ACA? Of course we do. Every person agrees on that. And every person agrees that we shouldn’t kick 20 million of our fellow neighbors out of hospital beds or home health care services.
We all know or have heard of a family member, friend, or neighbor who has had bad luck with an ACA health care exchange. We have sisters whose premiums skyrocketed. We have buddies whose employers cut back on hiring to avoid being subject to ACA requirements. The list of broken examples goes on.
But we have a good starting place for working together to improve our local and national healthcare. That’s the silver lining. And if we can learn to respect one another and treat each other like neighbors, I know we will solve this monumental challenge.
Jobs and the Economy
When it comes to jobs and economic growth we are getting a lot of national attention right here in District 4. The local issue in Calaveras County around medical cannabis is playing out with the Board of Supervisors, in the local courthouse, and around dinner tables.
More than 1,000 jobs are at stake along with millions of dollars in county permitting revenues. Medical cannabis was legalized in the county this year. And because of local pressure from neighbors inside the county, that legal status is now being reconsidered.
Medical cannabis is estimated to make up close to 20% of the county economy. That means medical cannabis is the engine behind approximately 1 out of every 5 jobs in the county. The vitality of the county is tied to these jobs.
All over the country counties are facing challenging dilemmas like the one our Calaveras neighbors are facing. There are good reasons to oppose commercial cannabis in your neighbor’s backyard. There are also a lot of good reasons to advocate for the right to be able to earn a living off your own land.
Water and the Environment