Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mayor Vernon Parker Announces New Reform Items for Arizona

He’s defied the odds all his life and now he’s proposing a reform agenda to help Arizona do the same.

On September 23rd before hundreds announcing his exploratory campaign for governor, Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker called for eliminating the state’s corporate tax to attract jobs and allowing community colleges to offer 4-year degrees to create more access to the state’s higher education system. And he’s subsequently called on the Governor’s Office to reduce its own spending, as that office is asking of everyone else in state government.

Now, Mayor Parker is announcing a new round of reforms to improve the quality of life for Arizonans and the future of the state.

“Career politicians seem to operate in myopic bubbles or too easily entertain indentured servitude for special interests. That’s why we need someone from outside the usual group of suspects to get Arizona back on her feet with ideas big and small,” Parker said.

Specifically, Parker says:

*We cannot continue to pursue the same failing education policies of the past decade. "We must explore innovative ways to recruit quality teachers and strong school leaders—individuals who demand the same high expectations of all students regardless of socio-economic background,” Parker said. "The key to finding quality teachers is removing the artificial barriers to teacher certification by exploring new pathways to expedite placing committed teachers in the classrooms and by eliminating tenure.”

“Performance and results should be the measure for teacher retention, not tenure,” Parker said.

*Moving Arizona’s primary election date back from September to May. According to Parker the current primary around Labor Day discourages turnout and protects incumbents. Arizona voters deserve a more robust debate about issues and the candidates that dramatically impact our state; and

*A statewide ban on texting while driving. “I’m not sure whether driving after drinking too much is more difficult or texting while driving. But I don’t really care. They are both irresponsible and should be banned,” Parker said.

“Republicans will not beat a career politician like Terry Goddard with another one from the GOP. We need a fresh voice, new message and someone who can fight on Terry’s turf rather than he on ours,” said Parker.

Unlike some considering the race for governor, Parker has been a clear, outspoken opponent of Governor Brewer’s call for a major tax increase. Believing instead that a combination of growing jobs by attracting business to Arizona and intelligent budget cuts are the best alternative. Parker is not afraid to make cuts, having cut Paradise Valley’s overall budget by 25 percent and the Mayor and council’s budget by 54 percent.

Parker said additional components of his reform agenda will soon be released.


Parker, 49, is the current mayor of Paradise Valley, Arizona. He has previously served the administrations of George H.W. Bush, George Bush, as an Assistant Secretary for the $90 billion United States Department of Agriculture, small businessman, and as a pastor for two years at a small non-denominational church in Paradise Valley.

Parker has the most compelling life story of any candidate emerging for Governor. Raised by his grandmother in a severely underprivileged neighborhood, Parker was able to escape the drugs and violence through love, education and the commitment of family.

For more information contact Jason Rose or go to

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