Delegate Tyler is focused on issues that matter to Virginians, including education, jobs and economic development, public safety, and health care.
A good quality education, regardless of a student’s zip code, has always been one of my priorities. I was the first child in my family to attend a university and earn a degree. I realized that growing up in an area with limited opportunities, education was the key to living a quality life and earning a decent salary to raise a family, I have served on the state education committee for 10 years.
I am focused on SOL reform to allow teachers to be creative in the classroom while promoting academic excellence. I will continue to support funding for early childhood education, pre-k to higher education, expand career and technical education opportunities, maintain affordability for higher education and competitive teacher salaries.
Jobs and Economic Development
Rural Virginia unemployment rate is much higher than other areas of Virginia. I supported legislation that would increase the minimum wage amount to 10 dollars and measures to help women seek equal pay for equal work. I have been working hard to promote my district and counties' industrial parks as shovel ready areas for economic development and job opportunities.
It is a pleasure to work with Secretary of Commerce, Maurice Jones, who grew up in Kenbridge, Virginia and understands the challenges of rural Virginia. Additionally, Governor Terry McAuliffe continues to work to build Virginia’s economy. This is the reason I supported the decision to expand new funding for the Governor’s Opportunity Fund which will help to bring new jobs and businesses to Virginia.
Last year, with the closing of correctional Facilities and the layoffs of public safety staff, public safety was drastically affected and changed. This year’s legislators recognized the importance of retaining public safety officers and their valuable services and sacrifices on a daily basis to protect the citizens of the Commonwealth. Correctional officers and senior officers are two of the 19 state jobs with the highest turnover rate due to low salaries and hazardous work environment.
As a member of the Militia, Police and Public Safety Committee, supporting and funding our law enforcement officers and correctional officers has been one of my priorities. The 75th District has more correctional facilities (Greensville, Sussex I and II, Deerfield, and Brunswick Private Facility) than any other district in the Commonwealth.
l was pleased to vote in favor of the budget that included a compensation package for our state police, deputy sheriffs and correctional officers. The budget allocates $6,939,908 million dollars which will provide a $1,000 increase in the starting salaries for correctional officers and 1.5% percent increase for state employees effective August 10, 2015. The budget bills now awaits the signature of Governor Terry McAuliffe.
I would like to thank all public safety officers including our state polices, sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, correctional officers and emergency services for their dedication and commitment in making my district and the Commonwealth a safe place to raise our children and families.
Everyone deserves the right to have access to affordable and quality health care. Over 400,000 Virginians and working families do not have access to quality health, and the Commonwealth continues to lose 5 million dollars a day refusing to participate in the Federal affordable health care act.
As a health care provider, I realize that some families must make a choice between buying health care insurance and paying their rent or refilling their prescriptions. These are reasons I continue to support affordable health care coverage, affordable prescription drugs, assistance for family care givers and long term care.