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My Turn: Blueprint for a stronger economy

In order to move New Hampshire’s economy forward, it’s not just about creating jobs. It’s about creating good jobs that allow families to reach and remain in the middle class.

To keep and attract business opportunities, we can promote policies that bolster our job-training programs, support the infrastructure necessary to advance commerce, and take the lead in innovative job growth through partnerships in energy efficiency and renewable energy, helping to reduce our energy costs. We can explore the feasibility of unique economic development ideas, including passenger rail in New Hampshire linking to the bus service in Concord and the Manchester airport, an incubator program for entrepreneurs at the N.H. Technical Institute in Concord, opening our beautiful State House on the weekends to attract more tourists, and consider other economic development ideas that may emerge from community and business leaders. We must also recognize and appreciate that the economic success of the capital region depends, in large measure, on the economic success of our job base right here – our state employees and the employees of the hospital system.

A comprehensive approach to jobs and economic growth does not stop there. To promote economic growth and drive a fair economy, we should take steps aimed at increasing participation in the workforce, worker retention and worker productivity, including trying to address the high cost of quality child care, promoting innovative family leave policies, advancing workforce housing and finally increasing the minimum wage. Hard-working families across our state should not have to live in poverty or rely on public assistance, nor should they have to choose between their careers and their kids.

We create jobs by ensuring that business regulation is smart, fair and transparent, and by making sure New Hampshire’s workforce is second to none. And we create jobs by making the tough but fiscally prudent investments now that will pay jobs dividends in the long term. That starts with a cradle to career approach to education, with an emphasis on early childhood development, including universal full-day kindergarten. It includes a continued emphasis on producing career-ready graduates and making sure that our high schools, community colleges and public universities have first-rate programs in the lucrative science, technology, energy and math fields – and that postsecondary education is accessible to all students with the drive to get there.

Finally, and perhaps most important, we cannot afford to backslide on health insurance reform as well as the New Hampshire Health Protection Program. Competition in health insurance is increasing this fall, and low-income workers in the capital region will be able to access health insurance under the New Hampshire Health Protection Program beginning Aug. 15.

We need to make sure that our state’s emerging insurance marketplace includes providers serving residents of the capital region at competitive rates. Access to affordable health care has a beneficial impact on the lives, economic security and productivity of working families. Our workers’ livelihoods, and the costs of doing business, depend on our moving forward with health insurance reform.

As a legal aid attorney for the past eight years, I represented workers devastated by job loss in the Great Recession, helping them navigate our job-training programs and receive the unemployment insurance benefits necessary to get them back on their feet.

I’ve seen firsthand the struggles of working families, and I’ve worked to translate individual stories into systemic change through legislation, including working with then-senator Maggie Hassan to help persons who are working part time – disproportionately women – receive equal access to unemployment insurance benefits when crushed by job loss.

I helped veterans struggling to find jobs and housing following their return to New Hampshire from Iraq and Afghanistan. I worked with then-senator Hassan on a committee reviewing unemployment and underemployment of veterans in the state, ultimately recommending a policy helping veterans in state hiring. I will always remember the voices of the many families I represented who were trying to find work, who were struggling to get by and get on their feet.

As your state senator, I will work constructively with everyone – no one person or one political party has a monopoly on good ideas. I believe New Hampshire works best when we work together. Let’s get to work. I hope you will consider voting for me in the Democratic primary on Sept. 9.

(Dan Feltes is a candidate for state Senate in District 15. He lives in Concord.)

Legacy Comments12

With so many scarecrows against Feltes, he must be exactly what this state needs: a legislator who has a mind, an understanding of the problems, and willingness to work FOR those who elected him.

He is just another ambulance chaser and honestly we have too many of them in office as it is. Insurance agents as well.

So HYPOCRITICAL. Massively RICH Feltes quit his job to run for a $100 job - Liberals hate income inequality unless it is one extreme liberal like Hillary and Feltes

This is all hokum; flowery words, same tired ideas that will take forever to show results. What we need is instant impact to the economy. Job training programs are inefficient and have a terrible return on investment. None of the ideas Feltes outlines will do much to actually help the NH economy. Most are try and then wait strategies which will cost taxpayers even more of their hard earned incomes. The ideas we need have to have a beginning and measuring as time goes along aspect to them. Of course uninformed voters and ideologues, who know that none of these ideas really work will vote in knee jerk fashion for this guy.

Itsa - would that be like the Reagan Trickle Down Economics theory. It has been decades and what has happened. The deficit is out of control through tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations just so they could send the jobs outside the US. The rich got richer and the middle and low income people are worse off. Let’s start by ending the programs that have "proven" not to work. Repeal those tax cuts, repeal NAFTA and make tariffs on imports to even the field. That makes it cost effective to have jobs here in the US which actually put people back to work and I’d go for even higher taxes on companies that move jobs outside the US which creates even more unemployment. You are correct, stop talking and actually make some changes!

all of those ideas that Jim spouts are laid out perfectly in this platform... http://cpusa.org/party-program/

So what is your answer. The way the economy is going now is not doing anyone any favors.

Say what? " systemic change ": = http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Systemic " Systemic refers to something that is spread throughout, system-wide, affecting a group or system, such as a body, economy, market or society as a whole. " "I’ve seen firsthand the struggles of working families, and I’ve worked to translate individual stories into systemic change through legislation, including working with then-senator Maggie Hassan to help persons who are working part time – disproportionately women – receive equal access to unemployment insurance benefits when crushed by job loss. " It's already on the books.

You mean? http://nhlabornews.com/tag/part-time-employees/ = " HB 1323: This bill requires employers who offer benefits to full-time employees to offer the same benefits on a pro-rated basis to part-time employees. Along the same note as HB1544 this bill would be all inclusive for all NH employees. This bill also requires that Part-Time employees be given all same benefits full time employees on a pro-rated basis. While corporate America is cutting back, some NH Legislators are push back for you. "

" Title: requiring employers who offer benefits to full-time employees to offer benefits on a pro-rated basis to part-time employees. G-Status: HOUSE House Status: INEXPEDIENT TO LEGISLATE Senate Status: Next/Last Comm: HOUSE LABOR, INDUSTRIAL AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES Next/Last Hearing: 02/07/2012 at 11:00 AM LOB 307 " http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/bill_status/

“big government” is the greatest threat to the country has risen from 55 percent when Obama took office to 72 percent today — the highest that number has ever been in 50 years of polling. If a reader believes that more BIG GOVT is the solution then electing a Big Govt 100% pure social issues liberal lawyer like Feltes is your guy. Did you Know that Dan has quit his job to run for an office that pays $100 -

The companies that do rail studies can feel it now...Chaching!!!

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