Housing unaffordability, out-of-control gas prices, and stubborn inflation are financially squeezing Miamians. A.J. will go to Tallahassee with this in mind and will work across the aisle to alleviate the financial strains affecting hardworking Floridians.
A.J. knows that a thriving economy is one that works for the most amount of people—from the laborers working to put food on their families tables to executives seeking to maximize their business’s impact. But Florida’s Republican majority lost sight of that long ago, and instead has prioritized providing massive tax breaks to the largest of the state’s businesses that agree with their Culture-War agenda while penalizing those businesses that dissent.
As State Representative, A.J. will support legislation that helps our local economies thrive. Specifically, A.J. supports a dignified, living wage for our workforce and will support the elimination of the business rent tax on commercial leases to help local small businesses.
Florida’s housing affordability crisis is affecting Floridians young and old, and it is the result of years of Tallahassee politicians ignoring their responsibility to middle- and working-class Floridians to keep Florida an affordable place to live. As State Representative, A.J. will advocate for the full funding of the Sadowski Affordable Housing Trust Fund, which allocates funding to incentivize the development of affordable housing units in areas with the highest need. A.J. supports property insurance reforms that would have the immediate effect of lowering excessive property insurance rates. Finally, A.J is committed to thinking of creative ways for the state government to incentivize local governments to enact sustainable and mixed-income land use and zoning policies.
For many low-income Floridians, the greatest obstacle to prosperity is their lack of access to affordable, high-quality healthcare. For years, the Republican majority in the Florida Legislature has refused to expand its Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act, turning away billions of dollars in federal funding to provide health insurance coverage to over 800,000 qualifying Floridians. Low-income individuals in South Florida, particularly in Miami-Dade, would stand to benefit the most from expanding Medicaid. That is why A.J. is committed to filing legislation that would expand the Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act.
With more coastline than forty-eight other states, Florida is incredibly vulnerable to the existential threat of climate change. Despite this, Florida’s Republican-controlled state government continues to sell out to big-business interests and delay any meaningful action to protect our coastline, our economy, and our way of life.
Instead, Florida should be an international leader in re-evaluating how a major economy can focus on saving its sensitive environment. Florida must take swift and significant action in pivoting from dependence on non-renewable energy sources to renewable ones as well as investing in local and state infrastructure that lowers Floridians’ overall carbon footprint. We must also invest in infrastructure that is resilient to the effects of rising seas and more frequent adverse climate events. Finally, we must continue the decades long effort to restore and protect the Everglades. A.J. is committed to achieving these results and saving our homes and our communities from sinking into rising seas.
A.J. believes that strong public schools and local control of Florida’s school districts are critical for the advancement of all of Florida’s children, not just those from well-off families. Rather than erode Florida’s public school system, Florida’s state government should make public school teacher jobs more competitive and desirable. Politicians should stop legislating curriculum from Tallahassee and rather re-think how public schools and teachers are evaluated so students can spend more time learning and less time testing.
A.J. is a product and supporter of Florida’s top-tier public higher education system. Florida should continue to prioritize strengthening its pre-eminent university and college system while keeping the costs of attendance low for students, that means permanently and fully funding the Bright Futures scholarship, so that any Florida student who meets the program’s high standards in high school can attend its state universities at a substantially lower cost.
A.J. understands that the Second Amendment protects Americans’ right to own a firearm. But gun violence has deadly and devastating consequences in our communities, and A.J. is unwilling to accept gun violence and further, unnecessary death as the norm. That is why A.J. supports common-sense, broadly supported gun safety legislation that both takes guns out of the wrong hands and encourages safe, responsible firearm ownership:
It is a sad fact that, despite the progress we have made on equality, the LGBTQ+ community continues to face discrimination and hatred. It is also deeply disturbing that Governor Ron DeSantis and Tallahassee Republicans actively fan the flames of hatred towards LGBTQ+ Floridians through unnecessary, vindictive legislative attacks on their civil rights and human dignity.
A.J. is an unequivocal supporter of LGBTQ+ rights, and as a member of the Florida House, he will be an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ+ Floridians.