Senator Novelle E. Francis, Jr. is a lifelong public servant, a title that he carries with great pride. He is a career law enforcement officer, having worked his way through the ranks of the Virgin Islands Police Department before attaining the highest rank of Police Commissioner in 2009. Sen. Francis is a product of the Virgin Islands public school system, which along with studies in Criminal Justice at John Jay College, laid the foundation for his personal and career success.
His retirement from the Virgin Islands Police Department in 2011 afforded him the opportunity to pursue longstanding objectives of entrepreneurship. As a small business partner, he has strived to also be a good corporate citizen by sponsoring non-profit organizations and community events.
Senator Francis enters the 33rd Legislature of the Virgin Islands with a strong legislative record on education, economic development and quality of life issues. As a Senator in the 31st and 32nd Legislatures, he has championed legislation that gives local workers hiring preference on publicly funded projects (Act 7861) and expands the public school curriculum to require civics courses for all public high school students (Act 7934). Senator Francis has also made breaking the school to prison pipeline a priority and hosted the first annual Crime Prevention Symposium in February 2016 to begin discussions on this phenomenon with key stakeholders and community members.
Several pieces of legislation that he sponsored have since become law, to include Act 7936 which allowed agencies to meet staffing shortages by temporarily raising the mandatory retirement age for police officers, firefighters and prison guards and Act 7981, which supported critical and ongoing improvements to the territory’s emergency communication system. Senator Francis also sponsored Act 8032, which supports early investment in our community by EDC beneficiaries, by removing barriers to capital investment in our community. Senator Francis has led the charge on legislation to establish a mental health facility in the territory and return compassion to treatment of the mentally ill. He is the sponsor of legislation that would spur economic activity through the establishment of an International Trade Zone on the island of St. Croix and has also spearheaded legislation to support the territory’s crime fighting initiatives through the installation of cameras on traffic signals.
Senator Francis is a former Chairman of the Committee on Rules and Judiciary and Committee on Homeland Security, Justice and Public Safety and has also served on the Committee on Health, Hospitals and Human Services and the Committee on Education, Youth and Recreation. As a member of the 33rd Legislature, Senator Francis looks forward to advancing a legislative agenda that creates mechanisms for greater accountability in government and supports a better quality of life for all Virgin Islanders.
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