You see signs everywhere: “Help Wanted!” Our community needs workers. We need truck drivers and construction teams. We need doctors, nurses, PAs, and medical techs. We need engineers and coaches, dentists and painters. We need skilled professionals of all kinds. With industry and innovation, let’s tackle this problem, creating options and catalyzing opportunity.
To grow our workforce, let’s do more teaching – educating residents of all ages, expanding their intellectual toolkit and helping them acquire useful, marketable skills. For many businesses, the problem is not a lack of applicants but a lack of qualified applicants. So let's help workers qualify! We do this by supporting technical schools and community colleges, but we can do more. Let’s embrace apprenticeship and on-the-job learning. Let’s encourage school boards to resurrect vocational learning and refocus curricula around helping students land jobs. Let’s reward local businesses that train entry-level workers and enhance professional development
for veteran staff. Let’s make it easier and less expensive for business to hire “rookies” – inexperienced men and women ready to be trained. Let’s create a shared public database to link available workers with appropriate jobs. Let’s slash red tape, eliminate burdensome licensing requirements, and unleash the power of small business. Together, we can solve this problem.
Simultaneously, let’s attract highly skilled professionals from other regions. Growing and improving our community will entice qualified, motived workers to relocate here. What’s the secret recipe to draw wonderful people? Great schools, safe neighborhoods, lovely parks, less crime, low traffic, and more public amenities. As our skilled professional pool grows, the city will thrive. Hotel and restaurants will benefit. The arts will prosper. We’ll make our community greener, healthier, and more pet friendly; we’ll host more conventions and fun
sporting events. Working in concert with builders and developers, we’ll guarantee an affordable housing supply sufficient to meet our community needs. And we'll accomplish these important goals without increasing local taxes, lest we ruin all we’ve worked to build.
I’m confident our city government can bridge the gap between the business community and the people, helping workers find jobs with fair pay and good benefits while helping local employers find and retain the qualified, hardworking staffers vital to long-term economic success.