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Jose I Vasquez-Maldonado

Name

Jose I Vasquez-Maldonado

Occupation

Logistics

Political Office

State Assembly District 24

Political Affiliation

Democrat

How would you describe yourself to voters?

I describe myself as an altruistic, social troubleshooter. I like to draw attention to issues that affect others. For example, I worked for a company that had opened in 2013 in Reno and noticed it was breaking our state’s rest period laws. The employees weren’t aware of this, and the company didn’t care when I brought this issue up with HR. After weeks of inaction from the company, I decided to do something about it. After a 12-hour shift, I logged into one of the companies’ computers and searched and printed out the company’s rest period policies, which included the legal amount of rest periods. When I returned to work the next day, I gave it to my supervisor. The company wasn’t too thrilled about adding another break to our 12-hour work schedule. Unfortunately, I did face some retaliation. But at least, the company’s workers were happier about this new change. That’s one of many examples of issues I try to draw attention to and fix. I find it very rewarding to fix systemic problems that affect others.

What do you see as the top issues in this campaign?

I describe myself as an altruistic, social troubleshooter. I like to draw attention to issues that affect others. For example, I worked for a company that had opened in 2013 in Reno and noticed it was breaking our state’s rest period laws. The employees weren’t aware of this, and the company didn’t care when I brought this issue up with HR. After weeks of inaction from the company, I decided to do something about it. After a 12-hour shift, I logged into one of the companies’ computers and searched and printed out the company’s rest period policies, which included the legal amount of rest periods. When I returned to work the next day, I gave it to my supervisor. The company wasn’t too thrilled about adding another break to our 12-hour work schedule. Unfortunately, I did face some retaliation. But at least, the company’s workers were happier about this new change. That’s one of many examples of issues I try to draw attention to and fix. I find it very rewarding to fix systemic problems that affect others. Political Affiliation? How would you describe yourself to voters? The top issues in our campaign are income inequality, the unequal distribution of employee benefits between high earners and low earners, and compulsory overwork. Many Nevadans are dealing with a lot of financial stress. Countless people have left their jobs in the past year because workers have realized their employers offer diminutive benefits in return for their hard work. We treat the working class as second-class citizens. Low-wage workers don’t have enough, if any, of the following benefits: sick days, vacation, health benefits, a retirement plan, better working conditions, and raises. In addition, mental health challenges are now the norm among employees across all organizational levels. Most of us are required to work over 40 hours a week while being isolated with little to no social interactions. And it’s much worse for many lowwage earners as they have to deal with lots of negative interactions, either with their bosses, customers, or even coworkers. Many Americans’ mental health is declining due to the negative effects of work stress. Still, our legislature has done nothing to improve the lives of the average worker in our state. Thus, the goal of this campaign is to fight for legislation that revolves around mental and physical health.

In your opinion, how would you rate the state’s response to the pandemic? Why?

I would rate my state’s response to the pandemic a 5 out of 10 due to how badly Nevada handled unemployment benefits during this period. The entire system was broken before the pandemic, and when Covid-19 happened, most people lost their jobs. When we needed unemployment benefits the most, it was extremely difficult to contact the unemployment office. If you were one of the lucky few to successfully contact them, it still took many weeks, sometimes many months, to receive any kind of benefits. Many Nevadans were stressing out during the pandemic due to this broken unemployment system. That’s why we need an unemployment benefit reform before the next pandemic occurs.

Education and local government officials have long asked lawmakers to change the way the state assesses property taxes. That includes raising the current tax threshold. Should lawmakers consider raising those thresholds? If not, what is the best way for governments to raise money for local programs?

We need to raise taxes on properties that are sold to out-of-state homebuyers — like we do for school tuition — as many locals cannot afford to buy the houses in Nevada. Indeed, college tuition is much higher for outof-state students than for in-state students, and we could use the same rationale for property taxes as outof-state buyers can afford higher property taxes. We need to work out the best way to implement this, but it’s something I would consider in order to raise money for local programs.