"We shouldn't waste another minute on flawed policies that increase costs on our families, destroy jobs and local businesses, and create obstacles to success."
A Common Sense Agenda for Maryland Residents and Businesses
Controlling Property Tax Increases:
It seems like every year it gets more and more expensive to live, work and raise a family in Montgomery County and other parts of Maryland. One way we can help make life more affordable is getting control of the annual increases in our property taxes. We can do that by freezing property tax reassessments for three years or until there is a significant drop in home and property values.
Tax Free Tips and Sales Commissions:
Tips and sales commissions are the lifeblood of many who make our economy move, our lives more convenient and our communities buzz with excitement and energy. One way we can ensure that our downtown areas experience a new renaissance period is to offer food service employees, delivery drivers, Instacart shoppers and other retail workers a two-year state income tax holiday on their tips and sales commissions. Furthermore, the average grocery store worker in Maryland earns a little over $35,000 a year. I would support eliminating the state income tax for workers like them earning under $38,000 a year for two years as well.
Supporting Maryland Jobs and Businesses:
Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and you simply can’t have vibrant, stable communities without successful local businesses. Ensuring that customers and employees feel safe while frequenting local establishments and returning to their offices should be a top priority as we move out of the pandemic or possibly face another wave of Covid. As such we should develop tax incentives for all businesses to install air purification systems that will help clean the air of harmful contaminants.
Additionally, we should look at using Covid funds to temporarily assist people who may fall just outside the threshold but are still struggling to pay the rent. In general we need to work towards a more competitive economic environment so that all Maryland businesses can grow and prosper while also attracting new businesses as well.
Meeting Educational Needs of Children:
We want all kids to succeed. To accomplish that goal we need an education system that seeks guidance and input from parents and one that exists to meet the specific learning needs of individual children. Parents should be able to choose the learning environment that best meets their child’s needs and their tax dollars should be transferable to that institution. Furthermore, competition is healthy and in a democracy elected school boards work in service to our families.
Safe Streets and Stable Communities:
Our police officers work for us, in service to us all, and their top priority is to assist residents, families and businesses in keeping ownership of our communities by protecting our streets, responding to emergencies, and patrolling our highways. We have some of the nicest police officers you can find, and they need both our support and direction.
Stop the Mandates:
Let’s get back to democracy and self-government. Mandates, no matter what their intention, are not democratic and we should get back to public debate that’s inclusive and transparent. Emergencies cannot exist outside our charters and Constitutions, and we should not give a free pass to unelected public officials who try to convince us otherwise.
Encouraging Higher Education and the Trades:
It’s truly a great achievement to earn a high school diploma. But it should only be the first of many great educational milestones. We need to make every effort to convince young people to aim higher – if you’re good at something, master it – go to college or learn a trade. We should invest in our community colleges and commit to expanding those institutions by offering advanced degrees in law, business, and the STEM fields. Additionally, how are we going to build the future without great carpenters, engineers, master plumbers and electricians. We should look at ways to support apprenticeship programs for trade careers.