Where I Stand on The Issues
I’ve had an opportunity to discuss important issues with many of you, but I thought it would be helpful for me to share my position on issues important to our district and state.
Proper Role of Government
I love and support the U.S. Constitution. While many people across the country are aware of the separation of powers found in the Constitution, it seems that most people in Washington D.C. have forgotten that the Constitution provides enumerated powers only. States must push back against constant overreach by the federal government. As your state representative, I fight for a limited federal government and work to reassert Utah's rights as a state.
More and more people are looking to government to solve their problems. This is a mistake. Far too often, federal and sometimes state laws are passed, and regulations created for problems that should be dealt with at the local level of government. As a legislator, the first two questions I ask are, "Is this the proper role of government?" and if so, "Is the state the proper level of government to handle this issue?"
Education & Empowering Parents
The past couple of years have highlighted that a one-size fit all approach to education does not work for every child. It's time we start prioritizing students over systems. I firmly believe that you can support a robust public education while also empowering parents and students through school choice, the two are not mutually exclusive.
By having robust education options for our children, such as homeschool, private schools, charter schools, and traditional district schools, we empower parents with tools to tailor their child’s education to better meet their needs. The education of the next generation is critical for the continued success of individuals, families, and our state. As a legislator I have ran legislation and supported policies that promote school choice, increase funding for education, facilitate innovation in education, empower parents, and put students’ success and learning first.
Lowering taxes and putting more of taxpayers' hard-earned money back into their pockets has been and will continue to be a priority of mine to reduce the burden of government and empower Utah's families. As a legislator, I voted against increasing the sales tax on food.
Additionally, I have voted to reduce the income tax rate, restore the child tax credit, establish an earned income tax credit, and voted to stop taxing social security income. I also ran legislation to stop taxing our military's retirement income.
Every citizen's vote is sacred. The right to vote in a free and fair election is the most basic civil right, one on which many of the other rights of the American people depend. Voting is how we guarantee that our government remains of the people, by the people, and for the people. I was proud to help pass a number of solutions-focused bills during the 2022 general session that strengthened our election security, while preserving the important option of voting by mail.
These bills did the following: added video surveillance of ballot boxes; required first-time voters to include a photocopy of their ID in mail-in ballots if they didn’t provide on when registering to vote; required the Lt. Governor to audit voter registration records at least once a year and prohibits voting machines from being connected to the internet. Additionally, I supported legislation in 2021 that cleaned up voting rolls by requiring state and local registrars to notify county clerks when a death certificate is issued for an individual. The deceased individual must be removed within 24 hours of their death from the voter roll.
Support Law Enforcement & Improve Public Safety
Utah’s law enforcement officers represent the very best of our state, especially the police officers, sheriff’s deputies, and highway patrol troopers who serve in the Southwest corner of Salt Lake County. Over the past few years as your Representative, I have had the privilege to get to know many of the men and women who protect and serve the communities of our district. They are good people, who genuinely care about the people they serve. Despite increasingly challenging times, we remain protected thanks to the selfless sacrifices of these heroes.
As a legislator, I have supported legislation to provide mental health resources to our first responders, provide additional and needed resources to our law enforcement, and fought to improve their pay and benefits. Now more than ever, our law enforcement community needs us to provide support and adequate funding for the important service they provide our communities and state.
On average, about 620 Utahns have died by suicide annually over the past five years, and the state’s age-adjusted suicide rates were the fifth-highest in the nation, according to state data. We have a lot of work to do. As a legislator, I have supported legislation to increase access to mental health services, improve options available to families, and provide districts with the resources to have a qualified counselor in each school.
I currently serve as a fellow for the Maternal Mental Health working group for the National Council of State Governments. In addition to addressing suicide rates amongst our youth, I am committed to finding ways we as a state can do a better job at addressing and raising awareness for post-partum depression, anxiety, and pre and postnatal care for mothers in our state.
Responsible Growth & Transportation Funding
The southwest part of Salt Lake County has seen tremendous growth over the past decade. As someone who has watched our community grow for over 17 years, I can personally attest to the ridiculous amount of traffic congestion, the lack of roads, and the strain it has put on our schools. This is an issue we can solve together.
As your legislator, I have advocated for increased transportation and infrastructure funds for the southwest portion of the county and will continue to do so. Herriman, Riverton, and South Jordan need more funding for the infrastructure that preserves the quality of life we all know and love.
Furthermore, I will not usurp local authority or control over important decisions about future growth. Government is most responsive when it is closest to the people. As your representative, I have worked closely with the city council members and mayors of Herriman, Riverton and South Jordan. Local government is where the rubber meets the road and it is where most land use and zoning and planning decisions should be made.
I am a staunch defender of the 2nd Amendment. I do all within my power as a state legislator to protect an individual's constitutional right to bear arms. As your legislator, I reasserted our second amendment rights by co-sponsoring legislation to institute a constitutional carry.
Pro-life & Pro-Family
I am pro-life and feel strongly that the state has a vested interest in protecting the life of the unborn.
As your legislator, I have fought to protect unborn children and will continue to advocate on their behalf and promote pro-family policies. Some of which include looking at ways to reduce the burdensome cost of adoption, promote maternal mental health, and reducing the burden of taxes on young families.
Preserving Women’s Sports
I have been a staunch supporter of preserving women’s sports. Sports teach important life lessons of leadership, competition, sportsmanship, hard work, and teamwork. Since the late 70’s girls and women have fought for women’s sports to have an opportunity to play, recognizing the importance of having a fair playing field to compete and the opportunities that came from succeeding (scholarships, recruitment, leadership development, etc.). At the risk of stating the obvious, men and women are built differently, with different biological strengths. As an example, the fastest female runner in the world could be beat by at least 300 high school boys who run track.
We have seen recently that when the lines of gender are blurred and individuals who are biological males are allowed to compete with females, they dominate the field. In 2021 I co-sponsored the bill that would have prevented individuals who had transitioned from male to female, from competing in girls and young women’s sports. During the most recent legislative session, I supported the bill that would have prevented many transgender individuals from competing in women’s sports, and was a major improvement from the status quo, creating a commission that would take into account safety and competitiveness when reviewing transgender individuals’ ability to play on a case-by-case basis. Throughout the session, the bill evolved and eventually became the ban we had attempted last year, while also incorporating the commission. I voted for the final version of the bill and voted to override the Governor's veto.
Supporting Our Military
We have a sacred responsibility to care for those who have served our country and preserved our freedoms. I have had the opportunity of serving on the board
of directors for Utah Honor Flight and volunteering as a flight leader on flights with our WWII, Korean, and Vietnam veterans. Time and time again I was reminded of the true price of freedom and the sacrifices our service members and their families make daily. I have volunteered at the veteran’s nursing home and played bingo with America’s Greatest Generation. While working for Congressman Stewart I worked on casework for veterans, helping them access their benefits with the VA and feel strongly that we can do more to support our service members and their families.
As your representative, I have worked and will continue to work with state and local veterans organizations to ensure that at the state level our service members are receiving the resources and support that they deserve. In addition, I passed legislation that made it so Utah no longer taxed our veterans' military retirement income, making our state a better place for veterans to live, work, have a second career, and retire.