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State House District 84

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    Jeff Fager

  • Joe Mitchell

Biographical Information

What, if any, specific steps will you take to address inequalities facing women in our state?

What should our state do over the long term to ensure healthcare access for all?

In building a vibrant economy in our state, would you emphasize reforming tax policies, addressing income inequality, or something else?

What steps, if any, should be taken to curb gun violence in our state?

What kinds of policies, if any, will you pursue to promote social and racial justice in our state?

Campaign Phone (319) 208-4610
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All state agencies must maintain records tracking income levels to insure that women are paid the same wage for the same level of responsibility. (I did this as a college administrator, and it's not that difficult.) In addition, all companies awarded state contracts must provide similar documentation. Wherever the Federal government as failed to protect women from violence (including domestic violence) the state must "fill the gap." The state can also provide curricula for middle school students teaching boys and girls about appropriate ways to interact. The state can provide incentives to insure attempts in the private sector to equalize management and executive level positions.
First, reverse the disastrous decision to privatize the management of Medicaid. The state has a responsibility to provide easy access to health care for its most vulnerable citizens, and it does that function more efficiently than private corporations. The state can also take advantage of Federal/State partnerships to provide support for rural health care. The legislature must declare ambulance service as an "essential service" on equal footing with police protection and fire fighting. Particularly in rural areas, EMS is in danger of being curtailed, putting people at risk of responses that take too long.
Tax policies should take into account who benefits from the infrastructure provided by the state. That means that a greater responsibility falls on the top earners since they benefit more from our system. A graduated income tax would be a fairer means of raising revenues for the state. A long term study should be initiated into the use of real estate taxes as a revenue source. When the country was primarily agrarian, real estate taxes may have made sense, but in the 21st century, they may no longer be efficient or just taxes. The state should raise the state's minimum wage and allow certain locales to have a higher minimum based on local cost of living. The state can provide a floor, but it doesn't need to set a ceiling.
The majority of Americans agree that we need sensible gun control--or "access control." Certain individuals should not have access to guns: children, those that have proven that they are not trustworthy, those that show a threat to society, and those that pose a threat to themselves. The state should also require that homes practice gun safety by securing guns and ammunition to keep them out of the hands of those noted above. While we already have a large number of guns in circulation, the state should study successful "buy back" programs that reduce the availability of guns in society at large.
Good policy requires good data; therefore, the state should maintain up to date data on how the criminal justice system deals with the various demographic groups. When the data show disparities, we need to study the causes and address them. However, laws cannot force justice in the culture. Therefore, the state should encourage schools to include notions of justice in the curricula. Understanding that the schools are burdened with so much to teach, we can rely on educators to imagine creative and integrating learning that can teach children math, reading, writing, AND justice in one lesson. That's why my number one priority will be education--the foundation for the solutions to the challenges we face.
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