Jobs, jobs, jobs lately it’s the mantra of politicians but what does it mean here in Connecticut? Is Connecticut creating opportunities the best way possible? Let’s take a look and compare Connecticut with Indiana.
Since January 1st both states have taken major steps to create jobs but they have done it in different ways. One state has taken the route of buying the jobs the other has improved job opportunities by becoming more competitive to attract employers.
Connecticut Democratic Governor Dan Malloy announced on January 5th a plan to bring Jackson Laboratory to our state. According to the announcement the plan includes the state giving Jackson Laboratory a $192 million construction loan which will be forgiven it Jackson is able to create and retain 300 jobs by the 10th year. The state will further provide $99 million in research funding and a lease on land that Jackson will be allowed to buy for one dollar ($1.00) once 600 jobs are created.
So for $192 million Jackson need only create 300 jobs within 10 years. That works out to 30 jobs a year for which taxpayers will have invested $640,000 per job. That is the path for the Connecticut job solution.
Indiana Republican Governor Mitch Daniels was on the radio the other day talking about a different path to job creation. February 1st Governor Daniels signed a Right to Work Act for Indiana. This legislation frees workers from compulsory union dues when they are not members of a union. It does not interfere with the relationship between unions and their current members.
Here’s what has happened according to the Governor, “We’ve already signed new agreements with three companies. One announced and two to come soon,” said Daniels. “There are 31 companies as of Friday night now in negotiation roles who have identified right to work as a major, if not the major, factor in their interest in Indiana.”
Governor Daniels admitted to one mistake while working to pass the legislation. He said he probably underestimated how important the addition of right to work legislation would be to the business climate in Indiana.
The contrast between the states is stark. Connecticut has spent a ton of money for a relatively small number of jobs each year over the next ten years. While Indiana has spent only the cost of paper, ink and a pen to sign and enact legislation that is instantly attracting job opportunities.
Right to work legislation protects workers that choose to join and pay dues to a union while providing other workers the right to work without having to fund unions as non-members. It is time Connecticut recognized the rights of workers to determine their own priorities within their work environment.
It is time for unions in Connecticut to stand on their own performance to attract dues paying members. It is time to take the restrictive yoke of special interest off the shoulders of Connecticut workers and provide more job opportunities. It’s time to pass a right to work act in Connecticut.