Florida’s environment is truly one of a kind, and our state is home to some of the most unique and biodiverse ecosystems on the planet. As a result, few states are as vulnerable as Florida is to the effects of climate change, sea level rise, and human interaction. Florida’s fragile environment is at a tipping point.
Matt understands the hazards that face our environment, and there is none greater than the one facing our own St. Lucie Estuary. The threat is great, but the solution is simple: we MUST send the water south! This means electing leaders committed to long term solutions as well as emergency action.
We know we need legislators who are not afraid to set standards for farms as well as for urban areas that make sure pollution is controlled at the source. We should actively seek more land to expand the footprint of the southern reservoir and filter marshes so we can CLEAN the water that gets sent south. Above all, we need to sustain the political will we need to implement the projects necessary to save our home.
We are ground zero for the legislature's failure to protect our environment, but ours is not the only issue. Matt is also concerned about the threat of fracking and offshore oil drilling, and he believes the legislature should honor the will of the voters who voted overwhelmingly to use Amendment 1 funds for their intended purpose - conservation.
The Treasure Coast is home to some of the best public schools in the state, and many of the best and brightest students and teachers. Our school districts are incredibly innovative and provide many students with the resources necessary to be successful. Unfortunately, many children all over our state are still struggling to succeed academically.
Matt believes every child deserves a quality education and will fight to ensure that our public schools are fully funded and that our students aren’t over-tested.
Matt recognizes the value of public education and opposes the use of our taxpayer dollars to fund for-profit charter schools, and he believes that any school that receives state funding must be held to the same standard as public schools.
Matt knows that Florida’s teachers are one of our greatest resources and will fight to ensure that teachers’ salaries reflect the important work they do.
Empowering and expanding the middle class is a top legislative priority. While unemployment rates have decreased since the Great Recession, far too many people in Florida are still struggling to make ends meet.
The average annual income in St. Lucie County is well below the national average, and as a result our residents are forced to make difficult choices about housing, healthcare, and childcare. Matt wants all Floridians to earn a living wage, and he will fight to raise the minimum wage well above the $8.25 workers currently receive.
Matt knows the importance of the healthcare industry to the Treasure Coast and he believes that healthcare is a right, not a luxury for only those who can afford it. He will fight to expand Medicaid and work to ensure that every Floridian has access to affordable healthcare.
Calling Martin and St. Lucie counties home nearly all his life, Matt understands the importance for families to have a place to call their own. He believes that affordable housing should be available to all Florida families. Because he knows that families with young children are often faced with difficult choices and ever-increasing costs, Matt will fight to make sure that our families never have to decide between paying the utility bill or the childcare bill.
Matt believes that we can achieve the prosperity that has been promised to us, and he knows that the key to success here at home lies with our small business owners. We can encourage small business development by offering incentives to foster the growth of hometown businesses that provide good jobs, pay a living wage, and bolster our economy.