Sweeney Addresses R&D Council on Need to Spur Innovation Economy

Sweeney Addresses R&D Council on Need to Spur Innovation Economy


Princeton – Speaking at the Research and Development Council of New Jersey’s January board meeting today at Princeton University, Senate President Steve Sweeney emphasized the importance of investing in the priorities that will support economic growth. Comprised of members of industry, academic, and government, the R & D Council advocates for research and development in New Jersey.


“If we want New Jersey to prosper in the global economy, we need to increase our efforts to create a highly skilled 21st century workforce,” said Senator Sweeney (D-Gloucester/Salem/Cumberland). “We also have to promote the collaboration among business, industry, government and colleges, especially research universities. They all have a role to play in the research and development that is key to the innovation economy.”

Senator Sweeney referred to the “Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act” that is providing $500 million to expand career-training programs at county vocational-technical schools and county colleges, college affordability and transportation infrastructure as working priorities.  The Senate President also said that a renewed tax incentive program is needed to create and retain jobs.

“Funding for more career and technical education can be a game-changer for workforce development in New Jersey,” said Senator Sweeney. “New Jersey is proud to have one of the best education systems in the country. Unfortunately, we also rank one of the highest for sending our high school graduates to other states to further their education. We want to keep our young people here as part of a skilled workforce.”


Senator Sweeney also spoke to the need for fiscal and economic reforms for public finances.


“Public finances have a real impact on the state’s economy, including the business community,” said Senator Sweeney. “If we refuse to make the needed reforms, we won’t have the ability to fully fund our schools, lower college tuition costs, fix NJ Transit or make other investments to promote job creation and economic growth.”


“Government has a key role to play in promoting research and development,” said Anthony S. Cicatiello, President of the Council. “We need to have a productive and symbiotic relationship between the business community, education and government to develop new ideas, make sure they work and bring them to market. Senator Sweeney and the Legislature have been good partners in this effort.”

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