MassINC’s Schneider speaks up on behalf of Gateway Cities
Provides recommendations to special panel on revitalizing Massachusetts
regional urban engines
MassINC Executive Vice President John Schneider participated in a panel discussion Saturday morning to weigh in about strategies for improving the economic outlook in Massachusetts’ Gateway Cities. The panel discussion was part of a conference held by Congresswoman Nikki Tsongas and the Northeast-Midwest Institute to discuss the role of federal policy in advancing land re-use and sustainability in cites like the Gateway Cities.
Schneider’s testimony focused on what Congress and the federal government can do to support greater economic opportunity in Massachusetts’ older industrial cities. He gave specific recommendations relating to investment in three areas: stimulus funding, education, and new and innovative partnerships.
Specifically, Schneider stressed the importance of Congress following through on a number of Gateway City-related priorities including: continued stimulus investment to prevent a relapse into recession, continuing to support the President’s Race to the Top initiative, rewarding Gateway Cities colleges that achieve improved graduation rates, supporting higher education’s efforts to aid in economic revitalization, and promoting inter-agency collaboration at the federal level.
“Those of us that care about the fate of smaller cities need a new frame of reference for thinking about their renewal and revitalization,” said Schneider during his testimony.
Other members of the panel included Director of the Northeast Office of the National Trust for Historic Preservation Wendy Nicholas and Director of the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance André Leroux. A second panel discussion featured Alan Mallach, Nonresident Senior Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program of the Brookings Institution; The Honorable Parris Glendening, Former Governor of the State of Maryland and President of the Smart Growth Leadership Institute; Dr. Alan Hecht, Director for Sustainable Development, Office of Research and Development at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and Bob Van Meter, Executive Director, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Greater Boston.The forum was part of the Innovative Cities conference, held in Lowell, Massachusetts and presented by UMass Lowell, Middlesex Community College, Lowell National Historic Park and The Lowell Plan.
About MassINC – MassINC is an independent, nonprofit think tank and publisher of CommonWealth magazine. Our mission is to stimulate nonpartisan debate, shape public policy and advance a public agenda that supports the growth of the middle class. MassINC’s impact is achieved through fact-based research, journalism, and civic forums that promote: Jobs and economic security; sustainable communities; and government accountability.