I’m running so that our students have the very best teachers this country has to offer, so our families have health coverage that works for them, and to grow the Guilford County economy. Below you’ll find my stance on some of the most important issues in our state.
Where Michael Garrett Stands on the Issues in North Carolina
We have a cherished and celebrated tradition of offering world-class education in our county and our state. I am a proud alum of Guilford County public schools and the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. Those schools and those teachers made me the person I am today. When I look at my son, Jack, though, it’s clear that his experiences in our public schools will be radically different from my own unless we get back on the right track.)
This General Assembly has not valued public education in recent years. You can see it in their budgets, which chronically underfund our school infrastructure and fail to pay our teachers what they are worth. You can see it in the fact that kids all across our state are using 10 and 15-year old textbooks and in how teachers are relied upon to buy essential supplies.
Investing in the next generation of North Carolinians by funding our public education system is one of my top priorities. I’ll stand arm-in-arm with students, educators, and families to fight for the school resources we so desperately need.
Health emergencies and chronic conditions have touched every family, at some point. Every single resident of Guilford County deserves access to healthcare and insurance coverage, especially when they need it most.
We need to expand Medicaid so that Guilford County tax dollars stay right here at home and help to cover local families. Not only is this the right thing to do, it makes good economic sense. Medicaid expansion would cover more than 17,000 Guilford County residents and bring in tens of millions of dollars in investments to the local economy. Expanding Medicaid would also do a great deal to combat the growing opioid crisis by widening access to drug treatment resources.
I own and operate a small business located in Senate District 27. I know the challenges our local business owners face, firsthand. Our state government should be helping to fan the flame of the local economy, and that starts with supporting small businesses, which create about two thirds of the new jobs in North Carolina. As such, they must be the epicenter of our strategy for economic growth.
In recent years, this General Assembly has increasingly shifted the tax burden onto the shoulders of small businesses and the families who own them. I favor an exemption on the first $50,000 of small business income so that money can be reinvested in workers and local communities.
I support a revival of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) as it would give our working families a leg up as they strive to enter or stay in the middle class.
When it comes to protecting clean air and clean water there are no do-overs. We either act to preserve them or we leave their quality to chance. I firmly believe that we owe it to this generation as well as to the next to protect our precious natural resources from harm. I also believe that we can find a balance between encouraging economic growth and achieving this goal.
My opponent has been a champion for all sorts of reckless cutting of environmental protections. Rather than acting to protect our planet, Senator Wade has instead acted to protect the polluters. She backed a proposal which would have allowed for leachate, or the garbage juice which pools at the bottom of landfills, to be sprayed into the air so that it could evaporate. She backed a bill mandating that garbage trucks be merely “leak-resistant” rather than “leak-proof,” which endangers the safety of our neighborhoods.
I’ll work to pass laws which strengthen protections of our precious natural resources. We owe it to ourselves and to future generations to do no less.
Fair districts are essential to good government which truly represents the people. It’s time that we enact an independent redistricting commission to take the drawing of district lines out of the hands of politicians. I’ll support this policy regardless of whether or not my party is the one in the majority in the General Assembly because partisan gerrymandering is always wrong.
My guiding principles as a candidate for elected office are accessibility and accountability. Representatives can only be as good as their willingness to listen to and engage with their constituents and make policy decisions based on that input. If I am elected, I commit to being the voice of my constituents, not the special interests which stamp out the voices of the many.