What New Jersey leaders need to do in 2022
The political world was turned upside down on November 2. In a state with over a million more registered Democrats than Republicans, Gov. Phil Murphy (D) won a second term by a much narrower margin than expected. Powerful State Senate Speaker Steve Sweeney lost to a Trump-loving commercial truck driver who spent less than $ 200 on his campaign. Eh?
New Jersey is a blue state, but it’s also a blue collar. It’s distinctly suburban, with working class and middle class people fed up. The Covid-19 continues to impact us. With so much uncertainty, these are the most pressing issues our Statehouse executives should focus on in 2022.
Buckle up. New Jersey is about to take a hell of a ride in the New Year.
We need to vaccinate as many school-aged children as possible. I know that a childhood immunization mandate would never fly politically in our state, but it is essential that every lawmaker and political leader stand firm behind vaccines. The more children are immunized, the more likely they are to stay physically in school.
Helping businesses get back on their feet
More than a third of New Jersey businesses have closed since March 2020. Closed businesses mean lost revenue, hurting communities and means more people out of work. It is more important than ever to subsidize directly and provide low-interest loans to businesses of all sizes.
Responding to taxpayer frustrations
When Governor Murphy said during the campaign, “If you are a one-problem voter and tax is your problem… we in New Jersey are probably not your state,” that goes to the heart of the matter. which is why many taxpayers feel abandoned. The legislature must stay the course on taxes while ensuring that aid to public schools is maintained, so that local and county governments do not increase property taxes.
Focus on infrastructure
It looks like the Gateway Tunnel may become a reality, but there is still a long way to go to repair roads and bridges. There is nothing sexy about infrastructure until, God forbid, something catastrophic happens. I hope our leaders do not wait until it is too late, but take the initiative in 2022.
Childcare and economic recovery
Improving the access, affordability and quality of child care services is essential. Child care is directly linked to our economic recovery. If parents do not have adequate and affordable child care, how can we expect them to participate in the workforce? Governor Murphy has done a solid job of supporting child care, and I hope lawmakers looking to exercise fiscal prudence do not mistakenly consider the issue as part of a big liberal progressive policy. scale, but rather as a fundamental economic problem.
Make climate change more relevant
It’s true. You do not believe it ? Think about Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Ida. We can improve our infrastructure while maintaining climate change policies that reflect how far New Jersey and the nation are. Let’s stop debating climate change and recognize that we are catching up. Our leaders must act now.
Steve Adubato, PhD, is the author of five books including his latest, Leadership lessons. He is also an Emmy®-winning presenter on Thirteen / WNET (PBS) and NJ PBS. See steveadubato.org. Steve has appeared on CNN, FOX5 in NY and NBC Today and her “Lessons in Leadership” video podcast with co-host Mary Gamba airs Sundays at 10 am on News 12+. Steve also offers executive leadership coaching and seminars for a variety of businesses and organizations regionally and nationally. For more information, visit stand-deliver.com.
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