What's Your Plan? (Jobs Edition)

Before you support a candidate for public office, it's important you know they stand for something more than just campaign platitudes. My opponent says he "values good jobs." So do we all. The question is, what's your plan for attracting them?

At the recent Metro Chamber forum all he had to offer was to say he supports the Rosemont Mine. Among other things related to Rosemont, he evidently doesn't understand that the city has no permitting or zoning decision making authority on that project.

Eight years ago when I was first elected, we were in the midst of a recession. People were being laid off in every sector and we faced an operating deficit of over $44 million. Moving our economy was clearly the #1 priority. Yes, I "value good jobs" too.

Since then we have instituted job creating development incentives that have been key to spurring economic growth. Our Primary Jobs Incentive has resulted in multiple projects of over $5 million in investment, jobs paying over $52,000 annually with employers who offer over 75 percent of employee's benefits. Our Government Property Leased Excise Tax is one of the factors that has resulted in over $500 million in private sector growth in the downtown core. And there's more.

We have instituted site specific sales tax incentives to help with public infrastructure needs. The downtown core, and greater Infill Incentive Districts have helped businesses move in with new jobs throughout the downtown region. Our HUD 108 bridge loan was directly responsible for making the AC Marriott Hotel project a success. There is now Certificate of Occupancy relief, cross training of project inspectors, impact fee deferrals, dedicated project managers, water infrastructure incentives, and on and on.

Results? Raytheon is adding 1,975 new high-paying jobs. Vector Space. Comcast. Home Goods. Caterpillar. Hexagon Mining. City Park. Marist on Cathedral Square. 1 East and 1 West Broadway. La Placita. A new university area hotel. New retail and mixed use throughout downtown.

My opponent has a cliché to offer. I have a track record. It includes working with many of you throughout the community, both public and private sector, to come up with incentives and processes that have us on an upward trajectory as we climb out from the recession.

I invite my opponent to share his specific plan, beyond simply saying he'd like somebody else to build the Rosemont Mine. Contact the Star at Tucson.com, or the Tucson Sentinel at tucsonsentinel.com. Or try KVOA.com, KOLD.com or KGUN9.com. Let us all hear your plan for bringing the jobs we all value.

This job is more than simply rhetoric. I have a record of success, the results of which you can see.

- Steve K