BOSTON (WWLP) – Senator John Velis represents his hometown of Westfield at the Statehouse.

Velis said his guiding principle is to “get things done”, and that is what he hopes to do this session as the senior senator from Hampden County. Senator Velis is no stranger to service, his first foray into government was through Westfield’s Commission for Citizens with Disabilities.

He is also currently ranked as a Major in the U.S. Army reserves and is currently transitioning into the Massachusetts National Guard. Now, western Massachusetts lost representation during redistricting, but Velis is confident the western part of the state will be heard.

“It’s my job and my colleagues’ job in the four western counties to pound the table, to reach out to leadership, and let them know about the challenges that we face in western Massachusetts and let them know that we will not be forgotten, it’s as simple as that.”

One of Velis’s top priorities is tax relief. He has filed bills regarding the child tax credit, the senior center circuit breaker tax credit, and one raising the estate tax threshold.

When it comes to public safety, he filed bills dealing with dangerousness hearings and revenge porn.

“Today in Massachusetts, for these 58A dangerousness hearings – certain child sex offenses, human trafficking, threats to kill and rape, right now the prosecutors in those cases can’t ask for a 58A dangerousness hearing. It’s insanity, the revenge porn bill, we are one of two states that haven’t done something on that. Give me a break, I filed that bill again.” Senator John Velis

Velis also mentioned that housing is one of his priorities, calling it one of the biggest issues we face as a state.

Now on a Federal level, Senator Elizabeth Warren reached out to Senator Velis this week looking to work together on veteran issues. He believes the “sky is the limit” when it comes to what can be accomplished with that partnership.