There’s not a problem that can’t be solved with a proper education and I’m a firm believer that in order to build a stronger, healthier, more prosperous West Virginia, we have got to make major investments in public education. Not only does this include paying teachers and public service workers a competitive wage, but we’ve got to make sure West Virginia families are properly supported as well.
If elected, I will fully support:
• Universal pre-k for every single West Virginia student, as studies show that investments in universal pre-k programs produce higher student achievement and lower rates of grade repetition, especially in economically depressed communities.
• Immediate college debt elimination for all Education majors willing to stay and teach in the West Virginia public school system upon graduating.
• Establishing CEC’s to train every West Virginia teacher and everyone working in our schools on how to properly interact with autistic students.
• Making sure every public school in West Virginia has a mental health professional on-staff to ensure that students dealing with traumas associated with abuse, poverty, and the addiction epidemic have all the resources they need to succeed.
• Increasing the severance tax on natural gas as well as the corporate net-income tax to generate the necessary revenue to ensure that every West Virginia student can attend a 2-year college or technical school, tuition-free.
• Using tax revenue generated by a legal cannabis industry to fully fund PEIA and provide additional pay increases to all West Virginia teachers and public service personnel.
When WV teachers and public service personnel went on strike in 2018, they did so in protest of their healthcare costs rising to the point of near unaffordability.
Medical industry inflation is rising at a rate of nearly 12% per year with pharmaceutical inflation being the main driver at 6-8%. Research indicates that states where patients have access to whole-plant cannabis flower see a 16% reduction in Medicare Part D pharmaceutical benefit utilization costs. Apply those numbers to West Virginia PEIA recipients and it’s a potential savings of $30 million dollars per year.