Why I'm Running
Affordable Nursing Home Care
Through working with families and estate planning, one of the biggest concerns I hear is that South Dakotans don’t feel financially prepared for long term elder care and they are not alone, as 25% of Americans over the age of 45 don’t feel ready. Median nursing home costs in the United States 241% of an older person’s annual income and Medicaid accounts for 55% of long term care services in South Dakota.
South Dakota has a rising aging population and our current health infrastructure does not have the tools to provide enough services to our grandparents and parents. In fact, only 5.7% to 7.4% of Americans over the age of 45 have long term private care insurance and SD has the second highest nursing home bed occupancy rate in the nation. That is why I am passionate about decreasing costs nursing home care costs for families in South Dakota by developing a state based long term care insurance plan and investing in home and community based services. Investing in home and community based services not only saves money for families and the state, but it also creates opportunities for the people we care about to receive the best care that they deserve.
Better Paying Jobs
I believe in an economy that should work for everyone not just those at the top. I will advocate for economic growth for working and middle class families through prioritizing fair tax structures that reward hard work. I plan to invest in a economic system that provides better benefits and greater job security for South Dakota’s workers from across the state. Through creating new incentives for small business owners and job opportunities from new employers, I want to ensure that South Dakota remains to be a state that values families.
FAMILY FARMS FIRST
No one gets into farming because its a good way to make money, but it's hard to find a better way to raise a family.
Agriculture is the only sector of our economy that still centers around the family, but national corporate agricultural interests threaten the bedrock of Thomas Jefferson's democracy. The conglomeration of land and seed companies threatens the diversity of our crops and the qualify of our food.
My family still makes its living off its farm. I'll fight for yours.
Good Higher Education
I know firsthand the cost of higher education and the difficulties is poses for families in South Dakota and that is why I am passionate about creating a student loan refinancing program, a college savings program, and ending the license suspension law for South Dakotans. South Dakota has some of the highest student loan debt averages in the nation, with the average debt being $21,298 in 2016. Hardworking students should not be crippled by student loan debt and we can help solve this problem by creating a program that allows college graduates with good credit scores to refinance their student loans for lower interest rates. As witnessed in Minnesota after its enactment in 2016, nearly 1,000 students have benefited from a state student loan refinancing program.
Aside from a program creating a program aimed at addressing the student loan debt crisis, I believe that it should be easier to invest in a child’s education and that is why I plan to bring legislation that would create a prepaid college savings plan. The program, based on Florida’s program, would allow parent(s) and guardian(s) the options to invest in their child’s college education at current tuition and fee prices. If their child decided not attend or if the parent(s) overpaid costs, they will be reimbursed. South Dakota is one of the best places to live and raise a family and I can promise to value yours in the South Dakota Legislature.