Competition

Cross-posted from my website, chrisheagarty.com.

Competition. It drives our economy, pushes us to be better, and is a cornerstone of the American Dream. Right now, many people in Wake County are engaged in the fight of their lives. We're competing for jobs and opportunities. We're doing our best to make sure that we're not the first generation that makes things harder on the next. 

In the State House, we can’t solve the global economic crisis. But that doesn’t mean we need to sit back and wring our hands, nor is it responsible to try to pin the blame on others.  We have in North Carolina the resources and the potential to create new jobs and ignite economic growth. But it's not enough to rest upon our reputation or to hope that one-size-fits-all solutions will somehow turn things around.  We need leadership and vision to fight to get the job done. I've done my best to be that leader. 

As your Representative in the General Assembly, I've co-sponsored legislation that will help North Carolina's next generation of employers remain competitive - so that our sons and daughters have jobs after they graduate - and that will help us stay competitive right now. One bill I helped write focuses on jobs that form the digital economy. This is an economic sector that will not only help us to jump-start our local economy, but which will also benefit Triangle students, keeping their rich talents and academic prowess here rather than losing them to other states.  

I'm part of the team in the General Assembly that believes in the importance of a good education. However, some politicians running this year want to turn back the clock to a time when North Carolina didn't have world-class colleges and universities. They support policies that will put education on the chopping block by firing teachers and reducing access to a good public education. 

I'll be blunt: they forget that it's our job to make sure that our students are smart enough to compete in a global, no longer local, economic market. They also seem to forget that if we don't maintain our commitment to education, high-tech industries will pass over Wake County for more competitive markets, in other states or over seas. 

Of course, the cynics might say “who are you, the politicians, to know what is best and how to create jobs?” That’s a fair criticism.  That’s why I am not relying on my own experience and judgment, but also upon the vision and insight of the leaders of the high-tech community that built companies like Cisco, EMC, and Red Hat.  I am meeting with the workers and management of companies like IBM and Lenovo to ask what are we, as a state, doing right, and what needs improvement. 

They are on the record, as recently as the NC Technology Association’s annual meeting, as confirming that education and workforce training are the top attributes that their companies look for when looking to expand jobs.  They believe North Carolina has a favorable business climate.  They value the investments we have made in creating a high quality of life here that promotes creativity, diversity, and a healthy environment.  Our research universities, community colleges, and public schools are crucibles for economic development.  That’s why people want to relocate and live in North Carolina and the Triangle. 

But, they warn, our state needs to do a better job promoting entrepreneurship and we must fight against backsliding.  Globally, other nations are rapidly improving their education systems. To incubate new jobs we need to strive to be at the top, not succumb to a race to the bottom by laying off classroom teachers and scrapping what made our state so great. 

Our economy will not recover unless we nurture new business opportunities while maintaining our investment in education. The two are intimately intertwined. I want to go back to the General Assembly next year to keep fighting for new jobs and the schools that made the Research Triangle world-renowned. 

There may yet be a longer storm before the calm. Still, a good education is important, even in the worst economy. Wake County will always have to compete - but we'll never recover our jobs if we don't have a representative who can fight to keep Wake County on the cutting edge of a competitive economy. 

We know Wake County has to compete; the alternative will lead to defeat.

Comments

Longer storm

Thanks for standing up for some of the fundamental principles that have defined our state and our national. Would that Republicans would join in the mission of working to make North Carolina better for all, not just for those lucky enough to be born wealthy.

Given the state of the Democratic Party in North Carolina, I suppose you can be forgiven for burying that fact on your website. Not complaining, just noticing.

Thanks for stopping by.

James

PS From out here, Wake County looks like a freakin' train wreck, with the Pope-Luddy gang running roughshod over local elections, and things will no doubt get worse before they get better. When you're surrounded by enemies who prosper on the backs of the poor, you're surrounded by a kind of darkness that is hard to shake off.

PPS Always a good idea to feature a link to your contributions page prominently in your posts here. :)

____________________________________

Corporations are people, my friend.

donation link

Thanks James! And thanks for front paging my post.

Here is our donate link: http://chrisheagarty.com/content/donate

And supporters can sign up here: http://chrisheagarty.com/sign-up

right on

You said it Chris, My wife and I moved here from because the tech industry is booming and the schools were good. Those things didn't happen by accident. It took people working together top build something. Keep on keeping on!

Thanks!

Chris : U R a breath of fresh air in NC politics. You have vision , mission and goal. Keep up the good work!We are proud of you!

Ron Sanyal, State Executive Member(NCDP)

21st century planning

ensuring our place in the global marketplace is no small task, but Chris Heagarty knows how to build on successes of past leadership while keeping an eye on the future

The other just wants to over-simplify things. We have a great tradition in North Carolina of forward-looking courage and leadership. There are examples, and the fruits of their labors all around the state.

We have in Representative Heagarty a man who knows how to keep MOVING FORWARD.

quality workers

Adding on, it's great to have fiscal policy conducive to promoting commerce, and in turn sound investments in infrastructure. But it's our PEOPLE who make the difference. We have to produce good workers, human capital of folks who are ready, willing and ABLE to succeed. For this, we'll keep getting those good jobs here in the Triangle.

BCBS

Chris

I see where BCBS is asking for another increase. Just as technology has significantly reduced the cost of stock transactions on Wall St., technology has reduced the cost of processing insurance claims. The grossly overpaid execs know it, but govt politicians haven't discovered it or choose to ignore it.

1. I recommend a counter offer starting with the BCBS's executives cutting their salaries and any bonuses by at least 80% each.
2. Since automation and algorithms should have been programmed into the system to handle routine claims, less human workers are needed to process claims.
3. Also, State workers can be trained and phased in to handle claims processing - - while BCBS is phased out. It will eliminate these unearned and inflated executive multi-million dollar payouts.
4. It will help balance the state budget, and NC can be the model for other states to follow.
5. There is no need to outsource jobs to India.
6. The taxpayers will love it!

Chris, with your intelligence and sense of fairness, you can be the leader in this area!

education

I taught middle school for three years and I am disenchanted with the public school system and the way students are taught in 2010. North Carolina should reevaluate the way students learn and bring that to the classroom. Can high school students go year round? Do students need to attend four years of high school or can they complete in 3? Should taxpayers spend money on textbooks or should students be given laptops where the the book is loaded on the computer? Should we visit other countries that are competitive and evaluate their education programs? I do not have any easy answers, just throwing it out there. There are many questions that need and should be looked at. And if I am uneducated about current evaluation methods the dept. of public instruction uses please by all means inform me. I do not actively participate in the schools as I would like but I do have a daughter at Panther Creek.

And it is great that you communicate with employers to understand their needs...Chris keep up the great work!