Unless Massachusetts wants to be a third world style backwater, it MUST stop the bleed.
What is “the bleed”? Well, for starters, “the bleed” is loss of jobs, loss of the 22-35 age group because they move away in search of jobs and affordable housing, loss of manufacturing, loss of small business, loss of jobs because we don’t educate enough of our own citizens to fill them.
#1: Repair and maintain a first class infrastructure including state wide broadband internet access by using the bonding already allocated to ensure safe roads and bridges, internet access, telecommunications,as well as safe, sufficient, affordable public higher education. Private higher education will take care of itself. Public higher education students on the whole remain and work in Massachusetts. Private higher education students do NOT stay. They can take care of themselves.
#2. Clean government. Transparency in government and avoiding bribes, corruption, influence peddling and back room deals. Hint: clean government leads to a better and less expensive business environment. That means actually announcing committee hearings in advance where people can find out about them, bringing back cable coverage for all legislative sessions, formal and informal, and ensuring that anyone can run for office without being a retired millionaire or funded by special interests. Today, to become a full time public servant and hold elected office requires either independent wealth, retirement with a defined benefit pension, or being young enough not to have a mortgage. Otherwise, no state representative or state senator can afford to buy a house in Massachusetts.
#3 Long term proactive planning rather than lurching from crisis to crisis with short term fixes.
#4 Whether it takes a “Work Products Administration” approach or another approach, bring back and encourage light and heavy manufacturing. If nothing is made here, decline is inevitable. We cannot just flip the same burger back and forth to one another. Not everyone is able or equipped to do all their work on computers and in their minds; humans come in more than one model AND value added is more than pixels. Create fast permitting zones, utilize closed bases and closed factories to do this – whatever it takes.
#5 Set up the equivalent of microlending, whether in a public/private partnership or directly – Treasurer Cahill could manage it – so credit does not dry up forcing small businesses that provide the majority of jobs to keep folding in record numbers. Whenever a viable business with a cash flow which exceeds debt fails because credit is not available, this is actually a failure of governance and totally avoidable.