GOVERNOR CORZINE UNVEILS ECONOMIC GROWTH STRATEGY
TRENTON, N.J. (September 7, 2006) – Governor Jon S. Corzine today unveiled a comprehensive economic growth strategy to strengthen and grow New Jersey’s economy while creating well-paying private sector jobs. The strategy is designed to ensure that economic growth benefits all cities and regions of the state creating new economic opportunities for all New Jersey citizens.
“Today I am unveiling a strategy to support the growth of companies that will make New Jersey the best place to live, work and raise a family,” Governor Corzine said. “Through the intelligent management of our state resources, we will create a stronger and more stable business environment for businesses to grow, prosper and create jobs.”
Following the first meeting with his newly appointed Economic Growth Council, the Governor called for a new partnership between the state and its corporate community. He said that New Jersey will be better coordinated, more proactive and more responsive to business needs in order to create a vibrant business climate.
The Governor identified six priorities for growth and has detailed specific action steps to implement them in partnership with business, labor, education and community leaders. In summary the six priorities are:
- Priority 1: Market New Jersey for economic growth by partnering with the state’s businesses and helping them to grow and prosper;
- Priority 2: Develop a world-class workforce by assisting the state’s students and job seekers to obtain the skills and education needed in a competitive global economy;
- Priority 3: Promote sustainable growth with a particular emphasis on the state’s cities and make strategic infrastructure investments to support economic growth while protecting the environment;
- Priority 4: Nurture the development of new technologies, and ensure that the state continues to be a leader in innovation;
- Priority 5: Encourage entrepreneurship and the growth of small, minority-owned, and women owned businesses; and
- Priority 6: Enhance the global competitiveness of New Jersey’s businesses.
The strategy addresses the need to encourage innovation and urban revitalization by focusing the efforts of the state’s departments and authorities on economic growth. Among the important programs and initiatives announced today are the Edison Innovation Fund and the New Jersey Urban Fund.
The Edison Innovation Fund builds on New Jersey’s tradition of private sector creativity and ingenuity. It will be used to support and promote both basic and applied research. Furthermore, the Edison Innovation Fund will stimulate the creation and growth of high-tech businesses in the state.
With an initial capital commitment of $150 million from the state, the Edison Innovation Fund is designed to leverage $350 million in private capital. The resources of the fund will be used to support research and commercialization in several growth sectors including the life sciences, nanotechnology, communications, renewable energies and expansion of stem cell research.
Another major initiative of the strategy unveiled today is the New Jersey Urban Fund. The fund is the centerpiece of the strategy’s urban revitalization plans, and will have an initial capital commitment of $185 million to make investments in enterprises in cities. Leveraged with investment from private sources the fund expects to generate $555 million in total investment in New Jersey cities over the next year.
In keeping with the Governor’s commitment to fiscal responsibility the plan presented today does not require any additional state operating funds. All resources for executing this strategy are redirected from existing sources. Furthermore, the state will ensure that existing resources are focused and coordinated to provide efficient and effective support for business and job growth.
Governor Corzine also announced a new website to simplify information for businesses, www.nj.gov/njbusiness. The site is the first step in improving access to information and simplifying how small businesses in particular get the information they need. The website will include guidance on acquiring financial assistance, information for businesses looking to expand or relocate and comprehensive listings of commercial development site listings, to name a few.
The new strategy’s implementation will be led by the Governor’s Office of Economic Growth and will build on the state’s existing competitive advantages. These include an educated and talented workforce, a location in the heart of vibrant global marketplace, a high quality of life and an existing base of innovative businesses.
While the Office of Economic Growth will take the lead on the implementation of the overall strategy, each action step has been assigned to a state department, authority or commission that will be responsible for its implementation.
A copy of the Governor’s Economic Growth Strategy can be viewed online at www.nj.gov/njbusiness.