Working to Improve our Education System
As an education and child advocate for over 30 years, I believe that providing a safe, high quality education for children is paramount to our state’s future. While we are beginning to turn the corner after some very tough economic times, there is still more that we can do to invest responsibly in education.
We must do a better job of attracting the best and brightest teachers and principals to our schools, and we must reward both innovation and excellence.
If I have learned anything as a mother of three children who attended our public schools, I’ve learned there isn’t one formula for success. Every child can learn if given the right opportunity and the right teacher.
In the last two years, I have been deeply engaged in early childhood education. What I have learned is that a quality, early learning experience allows children the best opportunity to succeed. Infants and children from infancy to five years of age have not received the attention they deserve. I will bring a new focus to our youngest citizens.
Revitalizing Florida’s Economy
Small businesses are the backbone of Florida’s economy and account for over 90% of the workforce. My priority is keeping taxes low and getting rid of unnecessary burdensome regulations. These strategies are key to maintaining an environment that fosters job creation.
Small business are challenged by high insurance costs and rising taxes. As someone who is intimately familiar with these challenging issues, I will work tirelessly to make sure that small business will continue to survive and entrepreneurship remains alive and well.
Protecting Our Natural Resources
Florida is filled with environmental treasures. As a native Floridian, I grew up with a natural love and respect for the unique environment that makes South Florida a worldwide tourism destination.
I understand how critical it is to preserve our beaches and protect the Everglades. They must be protected in a responsible way so that future generations can enjoy their beauty as much as we have. I will continue to promote policies that recognize the fragile nature of Florida’s environment and its power in rebuilding our economy.
Keep Taxes Low and Reduce Government Spending
During these challenging economic times, increasing taxes on hard working Floridians is just simply wrong and is counterproductive to the positive steps we are taking to get the economic engine of Florida moving forward.
Government must be a partner with Florida’s families and small businesses, not an impediment to progress and investment. Nothing is more important than keeping insurance costs and rising taxes in check.
I will maintain my commitment to this philosophy as I work to earn your vote as your next State Senator.
Reforming Our Criminal Justice System
I believe that our criminal justice system should be transparent and accountable for its mission to protect the public and lower crime rates. We need to re-focus on reforming non-violent inmates by fostering personal responsibility through work, restitution, community service, and treatment.
We also need to have the courage and personal responsibility to admit when we as a society have wronged somebody by incarcerating them when they were innocent. One of my proudest accomplishments was passing legislation that provides job training, transition services, and financial compensation to those who were wrongfully incarcerated.
We can be tough on crime without being tough on justice. I will continue to work to reform our criminal justice system. It saves millions in taxpayer dollars and allows our non-violent offenders to re-enter society as productive citizens.
Protecting Our Children
I began working as an advocate for children over 30 years ago. I served as a foster parent and Guardian ad litem because I always felt that we should help those that cannot help themselves.
Child safety will remain one of my top priorities. In 2007, working with a coalition of parents, administrators, and community leaders from all over Florida, I authored and passed the first anti-bullying legislation in the country that prohibited cyber-bulling. The emphasis of the bill ensures that Florida schools must provide safe havens for all students. It was rated by Bully Police USA as the best bill in the nation and became a model for other states.
My advocacy for children brought me to the political process and it is the reason I hope to return.