Lindsay Tavarozzi – 1851 Staff
The 2014 Massachusetts governor candidates visited Lasell College for a panel sponsored by the Small Business Institute and the Newton-Needham Chamber of Commerce. During this panel, each of the candidates spoke regarding the role and impact of small businesses in the economic development of Massachusetts.
The candidates all were passionate about different issues, but were still able to agree on most of the proposed topics. The topics included raising minimum wage, keeping college students in Massachusetts after graduation, independent contract laws, raising gas tax and film tax credits.
“The state has the potential to be the most welcoming, connected and prepared for what comes our way,” said Juliette Kayyem, a candidate for the Massachusetts governor position
Candidate Joe Avellone spoke on his love for Massachusetts, the need to give back to the state, and the importance of an increase in jobs in the commonwealth.
“We first must make sure we have the right skills, and then we must create an environment for growth. It’s all about creating opportunity,” said Avellone.
Current Massachusetts state treasurer and candidate for the governor position Steve Grossman said, “If you think about the amount of young people that attend college here in Massachusetts, most of them want to either move to New York or Los Angeles after they graduate. If we build up the creative community here, they may change their mind and decide to stay.”
Evan Falchuk, the United Independent Party Candidate for governor of Massachusetts agreed with Grossman. “There are a lot of creative things that can be done. It is just a matter of making it happen,” said Falchuck.
Candidate Jeff McCormick believes jobs are the most important issue facing Massachusetts’ residents.
“All I have done my entire career is focus on building smaller businesses into major companies.” He said, “If you take one thing away from this, I want it to be ‘Jeff for jobs,’” said McCormick.
Candidate Don Berwick spoke on recommitting to social justice, equality, passion, and fundamental values which will help Massachusetts. He believes focusing on these values will help the state flourish.
Continental breakfast was provided before this event along with designated times for networking with the candidates. This event was organized to kick off Small Business Month.