I will make sure that we have secure funding for education in North Dakota, and not just freeze funding, but truly make a difference. Freezing funding had the effect of making class sizes large, diminishing paraprofessional support, and decreasing the number of teachers that could be hired. I know many members of the community who teach from 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM, and then go on to their second jobs. We need to support our teachers and make a difference in education.
I know North Dakota and North Dakota values, and one of those values is that you help each other out. North Dakota is a rugged place, and the only way to survive and thrive here is to practice a radical hospitality, a hospitality that says "you are my neighbor and I will lend a hand." We need to help our neighbors and expand nondiscrimination laws. We will do this by modifying housing and employment issues to include sexual orientation as a protected class.
It is important to properly address the behavioral health needs of people in North Dakota to ensure better outcomes for those needing support. We can also address the technological needs of our state's social service agencies to ensure collaboration among these entities. I believe we must also increase resources for our state's substance intervention and treatment centers.
North Dakota's legislature reduced corporate and personal tax rates in 2009, 2011, 2013, and 2015 and offered a temporary "buy down" of property taxes. This allowed North Dakota to become one of the nation's most tax friendly states, but is that really helping our state? I would like to work on a bipartisan approach to return property tax relief to North Dakotans and develop a consistent tax structure for families and corporations.