Do you support the findings of the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education? Are you committed to funding associated reforms, and if so, how?
Davis: I fully support the findings and funding of them. As promised when casinos were first discussed, a significant portion of monies were to be used strictly for schools, and not in lieu of budgeted funds. Our students are our greatest asset. We must make sure they have all the necessary tools to learn. This commission laid out “9 Building Blocks for a World-Class Education System”. As the world is changing, we must change as well to give our children a leg up and be competitive. We in Maryland should have top rated schools, not in only the country, but globally as well. An educated populace will be the only way to keep our democracy alive.
Is Maryland’s transportation spending appropriately balanced between roads and transit? Does the state have the resources to meet its transportation needs? With the cancellation of the Red Line and the advent of BaltimoreLink, is the Baltimore region adequately served by transit?
Davis: While the Baltimore Link is a positive addition to the transportation aimed at the Baltimore area, a look into how surrounding counties will be affected and how to tie them into ancillary bus routes and the MARC system is necessary as well. The addition of lanes in heavily traveled areas during peak times is a bandaid, albeit one that will help at this time, but we need to think future-minded and how MDOT will be able to come up with alternatives via mass transit. There also needs to be more cooperation between county bus lines or integration of lines.
Do you support the legalization of recreational marijuana?
Davis: I am in favor of controlled distribution of recreational marijuana in authorized stores. Many individuals are going to other states for recreational marijuana and we are losing out on tax income. With legalized marijuana, there will be less incarceration for minimal amounts and more control of the substance itself.
At a time when the federal government’s commitment to Chesapeake Bay restoration is questionable, what new steps should Maryland take to protect this resource?
Davis: The Chesapeake Bay is a very important part of our state and must be protected. Together with New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Virginia, we all need to take steps and increase funding for its protection for now and the future. State and federal funding should be used to clear the upper side of the Conowingo Dam as much debris comes from the Susquehanna which begins in New York State, hence the partnership with other states. More dredging needs to occur with the Corp of Engineers to clear more waterways.We need to help those who are farming oysters to help the bay with the natural cleansing of the water. The bay is improving, we need to continue to do this as it is necessary to our future.
What steps should Maryland take to ensure the broadest possible access to affordable health care?
Davis: I believe everyone should be able to have affordable health care. Preventative health care many times prevents disease and catastrophic illness due to early detection. The ACA was a good start and Maryland has been looked to as a leader, we must try to find other ways to keep and have affordable health care for all. An example would be HealthCare Access Maryland, where navigators help individuals and families find affordable healthcare. There are many other ways to address this concern, all of which have pros and cons and will need to be evaluated.
What role should the state play in helping Baltimore address violent crime?
Davis: We need to provide avenues for respectable wages, jobs, and beautification of neighborhoods. Let us look to those cities where the crime rate has been turned around and the neighborhoods are beginning to thrive. We need to provide help to create access to healthier living ie: community gardens, community centers to help parents and children to develop their strengths.
How would you characterize Maryland’s business climate? What can the state do to foster the creation of more family-supporting jobs?
Davis: We need to be more competitive with surrounding states. Look for tax breaks for companies that are or will fix infrastructure as part of their plan of development. Make it more assessable for filming of movies/TV shows who paint Maryland in a positive light. Continue more training and help for entrepreneurs or entrepreneur hopefuls, as well as in areas where our state shines, such as technology.
Do you support the creation of a non-partisan, independent body to draw legislative and congressional district maps after each census?
Davis: Yes, however, it needs to a non-partisan, independent body.
Does the Law Enforcement Officers Bill of Rights adequately balance protections for police and the public? Should it be changed, and if so, how?
Davis: The only changes I believe should occur are: when an investigation is in process, an investigator from another agency should definitely be called in to work with the in-house investigator. Depending upon the alleged offense, a civilian should be part of the administrative hearing.
What strategy would you adopt to address the opioid addiction and overdose crisis?
Davis: Number one: controlling the number of opioids being prescribed without renewal. Give the pharmacist the right to refuse or question a prescription Number two: more funding for rehabilitation and recovery Number 3: funding for family awareness The funding will be available with tax money collected from the legalization of marijuana.
What if anything should the state do to address income inequality?
Davis: Raise the minimum wage so families can live without assistance. Help individuals to train for higher income jobs. Require empress to report payroll statistics and fine companies who are not paying equal salaries for equal work.
Do the state’s Public Information Act and open meetings laws adequately ensure Marylanders’ ability to exercise oversight of the government?
Davis: Yes, however citizens need to take the responsibility to read and attend meetings.