Kudos to Governor Patrick for his focus on jobs and economic development for his second term. Travelling within the Commonwealth, across the country, and globally to attract economic development to the state can be an effective way to market the benefits of one of the top concentrations of skilled talent in the world.
In addition, opportunities for improving the Commonwealth’s economic environment exist here at home. Recently, John Schneider wrote in MassINC’s “INCSPOT blog” about three suggestions for the Administration:
- Conduct a top to bottom review of regulations that affect the state’s business environment.
- Make higher education reform a cornerstone of your second term.
- Get a handle on rising costs, especially health care, energy, and local government.
I completely agree with these ideas, especially regarding the cost of doing business in the Commonwealth. Many of us know about the direct costs: taxes, fees, health care and unemployment insurance. However, the cost in both time and money that arise from the multiple layers of regulations for existing businesses are an enormous burden and make us less competitive for new growth.
We should encourage our political leaders to get out of the office and aggressively market Massachusetts, but at the same time, we need to do a top-to-bottom assessment of the rules we impose on business. The better we do on the latter, the more success we will have attracting businesses to Massachusetts.