"I am committed to making Pennsylvania a better place to live for all our residents. The Commonwealth is at a critical crossroads and is faced with a number of challenges.
I am a problem solver who wants to strategically and tactically find practical ways to improve Pennsylvania now while also positioning us for an even stronger future!"
BELIEFS & PRINCIPLES
Fixing a Broken State Budget
We need a real balanced state budget. It is unacceptable to pass increased spending plans without simultaneously passing revenue plans. We must not continue to borrow from future generations to pay today's operational expenses in state government.
Taxes and Fees
We can't grow Pennsylvania and retain and attract new residents and businesses while ever increasing taxes and fees. The solution to Pennsylvania's financial challenges is not to increase taxes, but to control and prioritize spending.
In our Declaration of Independence, we find the immortal phrase: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness". The purpose of government is to protect our rights and not to take them away. All people are equal in value and worth and should be treated as such. Government should work to have a fair playing field, but it shouldn't try to dictate the outcome. Also, of key importance is the value and sanctity of life. Whether the individual is still in the womb or disabled their life must be protected.
Managing Our Infrastructure Properly
Studies show that for every $1 spent on proactive maintenance we can save $10 on costly repairs. We need
to intelligently invest in our infrastructure to keep it in good condition and save money. Pennsylvania has had
a 'build it and forget about it' mentality for far too long. This has led us to have some of the worst roads and bridges in the country despite our ever increasing transportation budgets. It is critical that we properly manage our investment in our infrastructure.
Creating a Safe Community
One of the key purposes of government is to protect its citizens and their rights. We need an effective criminal justice system that is not hobbled by individual communities that ignore the rule of immigration law. We must also allow citizens the ability to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights and protect themselves and their families.
Protecting the Most Vulnerable
The intrinsic worth of a person is not based on one's abilities or position in society. Rather, our value comes from our very being as humans created in the image of God. I will fight for the rights of our most vulnerable including those persons who are unborn, physically or mentally challenged, vulnerable youth, victims of human trafficking, and the elderly among us.
Justice for Abused Children
As the father of five children and as a man of faith, I am deeply committed to protecting our young and in providing justice for those who were abused as children. I believe that a retroactive change in the statute-of-limitations of the kind recently debated in the general assembly, provides such a window to justice.
Just as it is important to provide justice for victims, it is also imperative that we not turn the effort at justice into a partisan circus with misleading communications that end up seeking political gain by attacking allies in the struggle.
As state senator, I intend to support a window for justice bill for survivor of childhood sexual abuse and will work with the leadership to craft legislation that will compensate victims for their suffering while passing Constitutional muster.
Open and Transparent Government
Government is for the people and by the people. It is important for government to be fully accessible, open, and transparent in all of its actions. We need to take all the necessary steps to connect our citizens to the information they need and seek their input on a variety of topics facing their government.
Business Environment for Growth
Pennsylvania is routinely ranked as one of the worst states to operate or start a new business due to our excessive regulation, bureaucracy, and high taxes. We are ranked the 6th worst environment to start a new business and also as having the 4th highest corporate taxes. These rankings should serve as wake up calls that reform is needed.
As long as we are burdened with excessive regulations and high taxes, we cannot effectively compete with other states. We will continue to lose our future generations to jobs in other states. Let's keep our best and our brightest close to home with a competitive business environment right here in Pennsylvania!
Strong Fiscal Management
We need to work hard to hold the line on tax increases and even work to reduce our taxes. People and businesses have choices as to where they live or are located. Pennsylvania competes not only against our neighboring states but also against entities all over the world. Our high tax burden often puts us at a competitive disadvantage that we must work hard to eliminate.
I am a strong proponent of zero-based budgeting to ensure that we don't simply allocate money to programs because 'we have always done that', but instead we should look for programs show their value and continued worth.
I was fortunate to attend and thrive at excellent public schools throughout my childhood. I had wonderful teachers who challenged me and helped me to grow immensely. All children should have that opportunity, and fortunately the 38th State Senate District is home to many excellent school districts. Pennsylvania and the 38th District are equally fortunate to offer a variety of choices for education including parochial schools, private schools, and home schooling. On a personal note, my wife and I have chartered a path for our 5 children that has included Christian school, home schooling, and eventually public school during their K-12 years. All parents should have the freedom to be able to choose what is best for their particular child's needs. Ensuring access to a quality education is paramount for our state's future generations to be competitive in an increasingly knowledge-based economy. I will work hard in the PA State Senate to ensure our district's public schools get the funding the need and protect them from any cuts!