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Thank you for allowing me to provide a response and for the opportunity to communicate with voters in the 24th House District.
It is difficult to choose just three priorities that will specifically benefit the constituents of this House District. I believe every legislative decision that a legislator makes should have a positive impact on the state as a whole which in turn benefits every legislative district across the state. That being said, my top 3 priorities for the upcoming session would be in the areas of education, heath care and access to broadband.
I have been extremely involved in the education arena during my tenure in the Iowa Legislature. I feel that education is one of the most important roles we have as legislators. The future of the nation and the ability of our citizens to receive the needed education and job skills for good paying jobs and successful careers depends upon us providing the resources in an equitable manner for all age levels. That would include K-12 education, Community college and career tech programs as well as college degree programs. I will continue to look for opportunities to provide support for our rural schools so that every school district in the state has the same available resources to provide a quality K-12 education. I am a huge supporter of our Community college system and the critical role they play in responding to the needs of local businesses and educating employees to work for them.
Another area that I will continue to focus on is in the area of accessible and affordable healthcare for southwest Iowa and the 24th House District. It is critically important that we have access to quality healthcare options in our local community. That includes not only doctors nurses and dentists, but our EMT, public health, and nursing home employees. I will continue to support efforts by our local communities to recruit and retain these quality health care professionals in the form of student loans and matching funds. Hopefully we can find more ways in which we can offer support for this critical infrastructure need.
The third area that I hope to focus on this session is broadband access. This is a process that the legislature started on last year with a few grant awards. This partnership with some local providers was extremely successful. It is time to implement these partnerships across the state so that every individual and household has highspeed internet at their fingertips. This will enable many employees the opportunity to work remotely. It would give individuals the possibility of living away from the larger population centers and enjoying the many positive aspects of living in rural Iowa, hopefully the 24th House District. We have also witnessed during the past few months the necessity of our students to have access to broadband in their homes so that they can communicate with their teachers remotely. We all hope this is temporary and not the new normal, but it has made us aware of one area where we need to provide the same access for every student and household across rural Iowa.
Thank you for the opportunity to explore three of my top priorities for the upcoming session.
Thank you for this opportunity.
Rural Southwest Iowans are some of the most self-reliant and resilient people I’ve ever known. And that’s why I feel more at home here than anywhere else. It’s also why I am ready to represent Iowa House 24 in Des Moines. Southwest Iowans know there’s usually a more effective way to get things done. We also know throwing money at a problem isn’t always a solution. But every constituent in the 24th District deserves that their Representatives stand up for them at every opportunity.
The impact of COVID-19 on Southwest Iowans has only just begun. The lives of multiple generations are at risk–we can’t mourn or celebrate together without spreading the coronavirus. We don’t know what our future health will be if we get sick. Iowa’s current Representatives give us the impression that taking care of our loved ones means bragging that the State’s budget has a surplus of $305.5M.
But we haven’t kept up. Our HD24 is battling a 20+ year loss in population due to economic decline. Our infrastructure–roads, bridges, and fast internet access to all–keeps us struggling to keep up with our big-city cousins. Rather than say, “it could be worse”, I demand we do better. As I do in every aspect of my life–I will seek out and create innovative solutions to what our current Representatives don’t want to take head-on.
Who has chosen the path for our students? The only answer: Iowa’s Representatives. Our Representatives have chosen to short change our programs and underpay staff. The last 10 years, they have significantly underfunded our schools. Educators and Administrators have been forced to cut and consolidate programs and schools and educators and staff are underpaid and stretched thin. Young teachers cut their teeth here and leave for better programs. Now, with the coronavirus there are increased interruptions, inconsistencies, and infections for families, students, and educators alike. As Representative, I will respect and support HD24’s students and the State’s educational programs as the long-term investment they are.
Similarly, incumbent Representatives decided to implement inefficient and disruptive medical insurance reimbursement programs that affect us all. Like schools, our other economic and job centers in our rural area–medical care and programs–have been eliminated or consolidated. Decreased medical funding is putting our rural lives at risk. I will prioritize our Southwest Iowa lives while stabilizing insurance reimbursements.
Rural distances are always an issue, but more and more we are asked to drive farther and farther for our medical care, educational programs, commerce, and jobs. Unemployment rates are increasing across the District. We go online if we are lucky enough to have internet access. Not only are our businesses and neighbors leaving our District–we aren’t bringing them back.
Self-reliant, resilient, and resourceful Southwest Iowans know when something isn’t working. Our community leaders and resources, students and aging population, farmers and business owners, families and our loved ones all deserve better–and that’s what I will demand as Representative for House District 24. Please vote for me, Chris Adcock, the candidate crowing the loudest for Southwest Iowa.