STRONG COMMUNITIES

Education

Let’s support our local K-12 schools and institutions of public higher education.

Massachusetts has a national reputation as “the education state.” Time and again, the Commonwealth is recognized for the emphasis it places on K-12 education. Indeed, states across the nation look to us as a model. But schools in our rural areas are suffering from an outdated Chapter 70 funding formula and the state’s decision not to reimburse 100% of school transportation costs. Let’s work together to ensure that our schools are properly funded. While addressing school funding, let’s fight for the funding to reimburse our towns for the full costs of school transportation. In a state known nationally for its commitment to K-12 education, we cannot fail the children who live in our most rural areas.

And as a Commonwealth, let’s look beyond our K-12 system. Our children deserve quality, affordable higher education right here in Massachusetts. They deserve community colleges and a flagship university that will carry them to the next level. Let’s commit to investing in higher education to attract and retain the young people who will meet the workforce needs of local businesses and industries across the state.

Economic Development

Let’s grow our local economy and support small businesses.

86% of all MA firms have 19 employees or less, and 458,000 are sole proprietorships. Many of these businesses are located right here in western Massachusetts including local artists and farmers, manufacturers and restaurant owners, small retail shops and tourist destinations. As a region, we value local by buying local…every day. Let’s identify the solutions to support the small businesses in our region and ensure that leaders in Boston know what we need to succeed.

Climate Change

Let’s fight climate change together and make the critical Connections between housing, transportation and energy.

When we build affordable housing, let’s build it to the highest energy efficiency standards possible. Let’s place a premium on increasing the energy efficiency of our old New England housing stock. Let’s adopt energy efficient transportation facilities and equipment whenever feasible. And finally, let’s make sure the Commonwealth is a national leader in promoting clean energy jobs and renewable energy technology.