Growing up with the name, JOHN GLENN, the idea that public service as a duty and a privilege to pursue has been ingrained in me from an early age. My mom, a single parent, instilled the values that through hard and sacrifice you can hopefully make the world just a little better.
I am an Architect by profession, it has been 40+ years since the last Architect has served at the Capitol. Through my work on projects from Scottsdale to Downtown, I’ve gained a detailed understanding of the chances for even more opportunities and growth in our community. I have had the privilege to serve our community for a decade whether it was on the Phoenix Planning Commission or the Central City Village where we worked to support our investment in Light Rail and begin to build a vibrant and accessible downtown. I have also served on start-up nonprofit boards; Project Rising PHX which was a community-driven infill incubator that sought to develop creative solutions to vacant or undeveloped properties in downtown.
Successful architects exhibit traits such as bringing people together with different ideas and interest groups with different agendas towards a common goal. As your next legislator I will go to the Capitol with the principal mindset:
- Invest in Education
- Build a 21st Century Economy
- Build Stronger Communities
- Fix our broken foster care system.
Now more than ever, the need for seeking common goals and understanding of the big picture are what we need at the Capitol. FROM DAY ONE I WILL WORK FOR OUR COMMUNITIES. We have a lot of big challenges facing Arizona and it’s going to take building bridges to solve these issues. I believe my decade of public service is what gives me that experience to lead at the state capitol, will you join me today?
Arizona deserves a better deal than we have been given them for the last three decades. If we’re going to build a 21st Century economy, it is going to start with investing in an education system that creates opportunities for all and gives the next generation the skills needed to compete for 21st-century jobs and providing a long-term thriving economy.
- Increase access to vocational and apprenticeship programs. We have only recovered ~70% of the jobs in the construction trades from pre-recession levels, less and less are seeking this career path.
- Increase teaching skills for a 21st Century economy in our High Schools.
- Increase Educators pay and retention. Treat teachers like the professionals they are. We should be increasing teaching certificate standards, not lowering them. Teachers should not have to take a vow of poverty just to teach.
- We need a bold sustainable funding plan that is less reliant on sales tax.
- Build better quality, more equitable and more sustainable schools facilities. Higher quality learning environments will yield better results. There is a great divide here between our poorer and wealthier districts.
- Better accountability and transparency with charter schools.
- We need more social workers in our schools, not armed teachers, that way we can better help and equip our students to tackle some of life’s challenging situations better.
Foster care and Department of Child Safety:
We can’t sit by as some of our most vulnerable are at risk and slip through the cracks. It breaks my heart to read the countless stories of children being neglected and abuse that we all read about in the paper. We have 16k – 17k children in foster care (Out of home). We have another growing crisis of what happens to kids that age out of the system at 18 and lack support and many end up homeless. I refuse to idly stand by while more and more of these kids slip through the cracks.
- Frontline social workers with a master’s degree make ~$38k/ year and turn over at ~1/3rd per year. We must do a better job retaining them, so we have continuity.
- ~ 75% of the DCS cases are neglect, parents that just need help and better interventions. I believe investing in front-end preventive and support services is the only remedy. If we can get to at-risk populations before things escalate we will have the best outcomes.
- We need to resort better trust between DCS and the community, we do this with better transparency and accountability, dissolving the citizen's review panel was a move in the wrong direction.
Sustainability & Climate Justice:
If elected I will be the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) accredited professional to hold legislative office anywhere in the nation. Our buildings are on the front lines of climate change. Sustainable buildings save energy, water, resources, generate less waste and support human health and are a good return on investment for the taxpayers.
We are embarking a new era of water policy in Arizona. Planning for water use of tomorrow is critical for our existence. We simply can’t take our states resiliency for granted.
Voters deserve to know who is trying to influence their vote, I support transparency.
There are common-sense solutions out there, guns claim the lives of 35k Americans every year and injure many more, the violence must stop. I believe that dangerous people shouldn’t have access to weapons. We need expanded background checks so that way we can keep guns out of the hands of more people that want to cause harm to domestic abusers and convicted criminals. Schools and public spaces should be safe for all of us. I am proud to be endorsed by Moms Demand Action.
Infrastructure & Economic Development:
Infrastructure exists to make our lives better and our economy more efficient. Roads, water pipes, dams, railways and much more make up the modern infrastructure you use every day. In district 24 we have some water lines that are older than our state.
The Central Arizona Project is one of the most transformative infrastructure projects in our state's history. Generations of Arizonans built today’s expansive infrastructure, and our leaders or tomorrow are responsible for keeping up with a growing population that puts greater and greater demands on it.
Arizona needs to be an equal protection state that outlaws any sort of discrimination.
Access to quality and affordable healthcare should be universal. My first guiding principle in this area is that access to health-care is a right, not a privilege for just a select wealthy few and those with employment that provides coverage. Nobody should go bankrupt should they experience a catastrophic health-care event, period. We need a more consumer-driven healthcare experience that is doing more to lower costs for everyone.
Criminal Justice Reform:
Arizona spends nearly $1b on incarceration and we have one of the highest incarceration rates per capita in the nation. We must look towards diversionary programs for low-level offenders that are not threats. We must do more to end the revolving door of recidivism, once someone has served their time there shouldn’t continue to be barriers to them reemerging into society. Inabilities to get an apartment, a car or a job after prison I believe can contribute to recidivism.
Whether or not you are in jail shouldn’t depend on your ability to pay for your freedom, if you’re not a threat to society. Yet that is the way our current money bail system works. I do not support private prisons as no one should be profiting off the incarceration of human beings.
Post High School education is critical for a 21st Century economy and upward mobility. College is simply unobtainable for most. We have a great Community College system in Maricopa that should be leaned on more that can drive down the costs for a full four-year degree. The state has gradually withdrawn financial support for our states universities and community colleges and thus tuition costs have skyrocketed. We need a scholarship program that covers the costs of the first 2 years of community college and/ or vocational training schools or apprenticeship programs (building trades).
When the state continues to cut the shared revenue cities are entitled too, this results in strained City budgets and an inability to expand funding to services like police and public safety which in turn has led to an increase in crime in some of the communities in District 24. I will fight to increase funding for our cities.
We have seen attacks on hardworking Arizonans licenses by this legislature and even threats of de-regulation of some (massage therapists, licensed behavioral health, landscape architects, geologists, athletic trainers etc) . As a licensed Architect I understand why many of these licenses are critical to protecting the public health, life safety and consumers. We should always look at barriers to entry for many professions, but we should not jeopardize a highly skilled workforce in Arizona. This legislature has been reckless in how they have gone after licensed professionals.
Historic Preservation is important, and I will work with stakeholders to advance new tools that can better leverage federal dollars so that we can preserve and rehabilitate many of the historic buildings in this state that needs some TLC.