“People want two simple things from government. They want it to work. And they want it on their side. In the Trump era, these principles are more important than ever. State government should promote opportunity for all and protect us from the excesses of the Trump Administration and Trump Supreme Court.”
- Jonathan Jacobson
END SCHOOL TAXES. We Need A Strong Public Education System that is Funded Fairly: End the Reliance on the Local Property Tax to Fund Schools
The current system of reliance of funding schools based on the property tax is unfair. It is unfair to our children since it means that the quality of the child’s education is based on the wealth of the district. It is unfair to the taxpayer since it has nothing to do with one’s ability to pay.
The State Constitution mandates that the legislature shall provide for the maintenance and support of our schools. I will fight to end the reliance on local property taxes to fund our schools. The funding should come from the State through the State-wide income tax.
We must phase out the local property tax to fund school and shift the burden to the State. It is much fairer to fund schools through the State income tax.
If we don’t change how we fund schools in this State, people will vote with their feet and leave.
PROTECT REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS
Reproductive and other rights should not be subject to the whims of the Trump Supreme Court. We need to codify Roe v. Wade and pass the Women’s Reproductive Health Act.
I will stand up for and defend Planned Parenthood.
PROTECT CIVIL RIGHTS
We must ensure that all civil rights, including but not limited to prohibiting discrimination based on race, gender, LBGTQ+, immigrants, DREAMers, and also labor and employment rights, are protected in New York State no matter what the Trump Administration tries to do.
EXPAND FREE COLLEGE TUITION AT STATE COLLEGES TO INCLUDE
PART-TIME STUDENTS AND VOCATIONAL TRAINING
We should expand the Excelsior Scholarship Program of free tuition at State colleges to include part-time students and for vocational training.
The current program is a good first step, but does not cover many students. Most who go to community colleges must work to buy a car to get to school. Often, they cannot finish in two years.
Older workers go back to community colleges to retrain and expand their prospects for better emploment. They need to continue to work full-time and support their family while going to school. Finishing in two years is not just realistic.
Many cannot finish college in four years for various reasons and should be covered.
Also, those who go for vocational training should be covered. A formal two or four-year degree is not necessary for many new 21st Century careers, but specialized training is. These students and workers should be covered under the Excelsior Program.
EXPAND AND PROTECT HEALTH CARE
We must require that all insurance companies that sell health insurance in New York State must not discriminate against those with pre-existing conditions. We must protect New York State residents against the Trump administration dismantling of one of the Affordable Care Act’s most important features.
New York State should develop a single-payer system to compete with other insurance companies to force competition and lower prices.
REBUILD OUR INFRASTRUCTURE
We cannot expect to prosper as a region and a State with a crumbling infrastructure. Local governments do not have the resources. The State should step in and fund the repairing of our roads and water/sewer systems.
EXPAND VOTING RIGHTS
We need Early Voting. One’s job schedule should not prevent someone from voting. A limited version of early voting exists now at County Board of Elections. We should expand this through the counties.
“No reason” Absentee ballots should be available to anyone who wants one. We should not have to go through hoops to get an absentee ballot.
END THE CORRUPTION IN ALBANY
A first step: end the LLC loophole which allows too much dark money into politics.
Limit outside earned income of legislators.
FIGHT ILLEGAL GUNS AND GUN VIOLENCE
We must have our law enforcement authorities work with other states to target out of state gun trafficking.
PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT
The State must have strong air and water standards in anticipation of the Trump Administration lowering Federal standards.