The Gateway Cities Journal
News and information for leaders who care about Gateway Cities


Unlocking economic potential in the Gateway Cities


Massachusetts leads the nation in education, healthcare, biotech, and a number of other areas that demonstrate our success as a knowledge based, hard-working people who value investing in our collective future. I moved to Boston with $800 in my pocket and have been fortunate enough to start a successful business, raise a family, and live my version of the American Dream. As a business owner, and someone who has spent my entire career building companies and creating jobs, I believe we need to focus on growing jobs in our Gateway Cities. We need to focus on tax incentives for businesses, workforce training programs, and building our education system for the future so when students graduate they have the skills for the jobs that are available.



Enterprise Zones.  As Governor, I will create Enterprise Zones in ten of our Gateway cities, specifically those that have been identified as the most in need of an economic and employment stimulus, in order to revitalize their regional economies. These Enterprise Zones will encourage new businesses to be created in, and relocated to, these designated areas by granting them a 10 year moratorium on their corporate tax obligations. By alleviating some of the burden and overhead costs associated with starting or relocating a new business, private companies will respond to these unparalleled incentives by bringing their businesses to Massachusetts in the communities that need them most. 


A Government that Works for Business. We must double the historic tax credit to incentivize developers to rebuild and renovate our historic structures for mixed use development.  In addition, we must repeal the inventory tax on businesses.  We are currently only one of nine states that has this tax.  Our location in central New England is ideal for large distribution centers.  Finally, we need to make sure that 43D permitting is as effective as possible for businesses to find a home in our Gateway Cities.


Massachusetts Jobs Retraining Apprenticeships. The MJRA initiative is a voluntary program available to Massachusetts unemployed claimants. It provides an opportunity for participants to continue to receive temporary unemployment compensation by entering into a job training program provided by a private business.  Private businesses that hire program participants upon completion of their eight-week apprenticeship will be eligible to receive a one-time hiring subsidy of up to 20% of the new employee's remaining unemployment benefit claims.


Educating for Jobs of the Future. State government needs to engage the private sector to build public-private partnerships in all areas but especially in education. As Governor, I would sit down with key leaders in the healthcare industry; nurses associations, dental organizations, and hospital management groups, to create public-private partnerships. Through their investment and expertise, we will create programs and curriculum at our technical schools as a pipeline for workers in healthcare.


Through these initiatives, focused on Gateway Cities with the biggest needs and highest unemployment, we can move the Commonwealth forward to create jobs, lower employment, and grow the economy for all the residents of our State.


- Jeff McCormick

  Independent Candidate for Governor



Housing & Economic Development


MassDevelopment issues a formal "call for districts" and lays out a full vision for the Transformative Development Initiative with Gateway City economic development leaders in Worcester.


Writing for the Standard Times, Rep. Cabral and Marty Jones describe the potential the new Transformative Development Fund holds for Gateway Cities. The Republican also picks up on the launch of the new initiative.


The city of Peabody reapplies for a MassWorks grant to help rebuild the downtown Peabody Square. City officials are more optimistic in this year's proposal due to more concrete economic development plans


With the Greater Boston casino license now settled, developers with an eye on Lynn start to gain clarity on the future of waterfront development projects.


South Coast leaders in New Bedford and Fall River are optimistic about the growing biomanufacturing sector, the Standard Times reports. New Bedford is gearing up for a developer's tour on October 16.


The US Department of Housing and Urban Development approves a Worcester Housing Authority plan to place time limits on stays in public housing and then rescinds that approval after the first-of-its-kind policy change is announced, the Telegram & Gazette reports. (Maybe it was concern over a new Urban Institute study, which suggests families forced out of public housing end up worse off).




MassINC hosts an event on October 1st with Governing, MBAE, and AIM on the connection between the common core and local economic development. Register here.


The 2014 Gateway City Innovation Award winners are announced. All five honorees are advancing educational excellence in Gateway Cities.


US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan visits a Lawrence middle school to talk with teachers about the progress the city is making and praise their commitment to change.


Margaret McKenna, the new head of the state Board of Education, raises concerns about all the time spent in schools on standardized test prep, the Lowell Sun reports.


Next City takes an interesting look at how Teach for America graduates push for policy change in Mississippi. Raises some thought provoking questions about the impact Massachusetts's Teach for America leaders will have on Gateway Cities.




MassDOT visits Haverhill to gather feedback on project selection criteria for the new state transportation plan. Worcester will be the next Gateway City stop on the tour (November 12th).


Creative Placemaking


A great opportunity for Gateway City placemakers: The Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence is now accepting applications. (Also take note of the placemaking grants MassDevelopment will award as a component of the Transformative Development Initiative.) 


New Bedford hosts the Working Waterfront Festival this weekend.




The Department of Community Development in Pittsfield is fielding offers from companies to develop a solar power project on an old landfill site.


The state approves a $6.8 million loan so Haverhill can make repairs to storm water and sewer pipes that have contributed to pollution in the Merrimack River, the Eagle-Tribune reports.


New Bedford rejuvenates old dump site with the construction of a solar farm, which will ultimately save residents millions in electric costs.




After the release of his economic development plan last week, Charlie Baker further stressed how his plan would help Gateway Cities grow.


Gubernatorial candidate Martha Coakley criticizes Baker for his lack of focus on early education during a stop at a Quincy preschool. A MassINC Polling Group/WBUR poll shows voters strongly support additional investment in early education.




The Revere Journal publishes a piece reacting to the recent casino vote which awarded the Greater Boston casino license to Everett over Revere.  There remains an optimistic outlook for the city's development


Casino supporters are launching a campaign against the casino ballot question next month.  They begin their efforts with a campaign in Springfield.



For a full list of Massachusetts Gateway Cities, click here. The Gateway Cities Journal is a weekly news publication of MassINC. If you would like to unsubscribe to The Journal but would still like to hear from MassINC, please let us know. If you are not yet on our list and would like to sign up, click here. To contribute news or comments, please email MassINC.



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