January 14, 2005


Romney sets big goals on jobs, health: Tone upbeat, inclusive in State of State (Scott S. Greenberger, January 14, 2005, Boston Globe)

The governor's pledge to file a jobs bill next month was new. Romney, who took office in January 2003, ran for the corner office on a pledge to create jobs. Since employment growth resumed last March, the state has added about 24,000 jobs, but Massachusetts still has 195,000 fewer jobs than it had at its peak in February 2001.

Providing few details, Romney said his "economic stimulus and jobs bill" will promote the construction of more housing in order to bring down costs; streamline permitting for business expansion; increase the state's investment in emerging technology and establish a sales and marketing team in a bid to attract more businesses to Massachusetts. [...]

"If the government does a good job with the schools and the roads and law enforcement, then that is the best way to attract citizens and businesses," said Daniel R. Feenberg, an economist with the Cambridge-based National Bureau of Economic Research, who said he was expressing his own views and not those of that organization. Feenberg acknowledged that Massachusetts could spur the construction of housing by relaxing development rules.

On education and healthcare, the governor repeated ideas he has put forth in recent weeks. To improve struggling schools, Romney wants to lengthen the school day, and pay teachers based on performance, instead of seniority.

To expand healthcare coverage and reduce costs, Romney wants to employ a system of carrots and sticks to persuade businesses that don't provide health insurance to their workers to do so. He also wants to change state regulations to allow insurers to offer bare-bones health plans to small businesses and individuals.

"Massachusetts can be the first state in the nation where every one of its citizens has healthcare coverage," Romney said.

He's governing the wrong state.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 14, 2005 10:56 AM

Actually I would have hoped for something a little different.

1. increase the state's investment in emerging technology (yes state government are great pickers of new technology.

2. badger business to provide health insurance.

3. Pay teachers more.

4. Cut property taxes on old f*rts, who by the way probably have more extra money in their glove compartment than your average person's total net worth.

Yep those are really inspiring ideas.

No general tax cut?

Posted by: h-man at January 14, 2005 12:19 PM

Unless Romney and the Mass. GOP can come up with a creditable opponent for Teddy the Submariner in next years race, how can anyone take him seriously? But if he shows an ability to recruit someone capable of making that a race, then he might be worth listening to.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at January 14, 2005 1:22 PM