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Sunday, October 16, 2016

Cathie Cool Rumsey on the issues

We MUST do better
By Catherine Cool Rumsey

Image result for Cool RumseyThe people of our community deserve representation that makes them proud. Partisan sniping and a stubborn refusal to collaborate with those who don’t share the same ideology are reasons we so often fail to meet the challenges facing our state. I am running for office because I know we can do better.

As a former senator, from 2012-2014, I successfully brought divergent interests together to address the serious issues impeding Rhode Island. I utilized my business management experience to focus on priorities and solutions needed to ensure state departments and agencies provide better accountability to taxpayers. I put forward real solutions to rebuild our economy, support families, and protect the environment.

I co-chaired the Behavioral Health and Firearms Safety Task Force, which is a great example of how people with different perspectives can come together, listen respectfully to the concerns of others, and find common ground to solve an issue. The Task Force was made up of law enforcement members, Second Amendment supporters, mental health advocates and concerned citizens. We worked together and came to consensus on legislation that made sense for our state. The legislation is now law.

If we can find common ground around an issue as polarizing as firearms, we certainly can work together to meet our other challenges. Making snap judgements or parroting the party line does nothing to solve our problems. It is not what is best for our district; it only sets us back.

My record shows I took the job of state senator very seriously. I worked hard for the benefit of all the citizens of our district. Not only was it an honor and privilege to represent our community in the Senate, I enjoyed rolling up my sleeves and diving into the issues, working together to find solutions. Numerous successes were achieved through this collaborative approach. Among the bills I sponsored or co-sponsored were: 
  • Legislation to better equip Rhode Islanders with the skills needed to succeed in a modern economy through the “Rhode to Work” action plan;
  • Legislation to help low-wage parents seeking long-term employment through job training and work readiness programs with child care assistance while completing their training; and
  • A landmark health care cost control law to curb rate hikes, ensure quality, and improve access to care. 
Unfortunately, there aren’t many “quick fixes” for the issues facing our state. However, I know that while the challenges may be difficult to solve, they are solvable. I firmly believe that, working together, we can and will put our state on a better path.

I would be honored to return to the senate to work hard for the people of District 34. I respectfully ask for your support in November, because we can do better.

Catherine Cool Rumsey is a candidate for Rhode Island Senate District 34, Charlestown, Exeter, Hopkinton, Richmond, West Greenwich.