Massachusetts House 3rd Worcester
The Massachusetts House of Representatives is comprised of 160 members, each representing a district of approximately 40,000 people and each elected for a two-year term. As required by the Massachusetts Constitution, the House meets year-round in either formal or informal session to consider legislation. The Massachusetts House is led by the Speaker of the House who is elected by the members of the body at the beginning of each two-year legislative session. Base salary for each representative is approximately $66,256.
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Michael P. Kushmerek
State your relevant background.
What are your top two legislative priorities for the next session, and why?
Coping with COVID-19 has resulted in decreased state revenues and increased expenses in unexpected areas. Name two specific steps the state should take to balance the budget.
What specific initiatives would you support to address housing inequality in Massachusetts?
What steps would you take to ensure the future of public transportation and how would you fund these?
I am a lifelong resident of Massachusetts who grew up in a poor family that needed food stamps to make ends meet. Despite those challenges, I worked my way through college and built a career in higher education for myself. I have spent seven years as a city councilor, five years as a city council president, and a lifetime listening and learning. I absolutely believe that it is essential that every member of my district has the same opportunities I had to follow their dreams and achieve success.
My top two priorities are health care and economic recovery. I've been in the unfortunate position of having loved ones who needed health care that I wasn't sure I could afford. I know what it’s like to be faced with that decision and I'm committed to building a future where no one is in that position again. With the impact from Covid on our economy and our daily lives, finding ways to recover from the damage, keep families and businesses afloat, and move forward are more important than ever.
First, the state needs to pass the fair share amendment to generate additional revenue from a demographic that disproportionately benefits from public services. Second, the state needs to find more efficient ways to do the things it already does, or effective solutions to existing problems. One example relates to senior long term care- there are existing models and policies that can help seniors stay independent longer which reduce costs to families and the state while improving quality of life.
I am in support of H.4263, a bill currently in committee that would help bring about zoning reform. Reducing the number of votes needed to pass those changes and make it easier to add new residential units to communities will make it possible to provide affordable housing to more families. It is important to me that low income families have an opportunity to live and thrive in every community in commonwealth.
Public transportation is an essential tool in addressing climate change by bringing down our carbon footprint. However, it is also important for addressing equal opportunity issues by giving individuals opportunities to live and work in distant areas without the expense of a personal car or parking costs. Finally, it helps young people get around and the elderly to maintain their independence. We’ll fund it by finding an equitable balance between riders, state investment, and gas tax revenue.
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