Portsmouth is a "Small Business" town, and in order to keep local business's from planting themselves downtown, where they can meet clients, go to our restaurants, retail shops etc, especially during the "off" season, we need to provide them with adequate parking, or they won't come downtown, and we need them there.
I serve on the Economic Development Commission which takes a variety of actions to expand employment and ensure that we have vital commerce opportunities by creating a good climate for business. It isn't all about downtown, of course. But the most important thing we can do for downtown business attraction is to add more parking. The City can be more active in promoting/publicizing economic development opportunities to attract more businesses to relocate to the area--such as a separate economic development website.
The City must work to improve the business climate to promote jobs while not sacrificing our historic City. Development which means jobs must be allowed in a controlled fashion and supported with adequate parking and a reliable transportation system.
Our unemployment rate is one of the lowest in the country. If there is anything that will continue to help keep people employed it will be for the schools to continue to inspire and teach our students, and to keep growing. Pease has helped our city to remain a vibrant place of employment. Most of all, it's up to each of us to believe in our selves and to build ourselves and each other up. I would be really happy to see the school work with the community to have community leaders and businesses mentor and apprentice students.
Portsmouth has one of the lowest unemployment rates in New Hampshire. Although the City Council is not directly involved in increasing employment opportunities, the council is always interested in developing partnerships that will increase jobs in the community,
All issues come back to the budget. If we make housing unaffordable with twice the rate of inflation budget increases, we make business unaffordable. Rents for small businesses would increase at a pace that would not be sustainable over the long haul.Control spending and you make this a more attractive city in which to start a business
Jim SplaineI support encouraging livable-wage -- as opposed to minimum wage -- employment opportunities, and instead of just service-industry jobs by corporations building hotels in our city, we should encourage more of that at Pease and elsewhere in our city. In 1990 and 1991, as the city's Assistant Mayor, I was the city's representative on the Pease Redevelopment Commission. I worked with others to encourage that kind of balanced growth, and I think we need to re-focus on that. I also believe that there are opportunities to have a real "working port" at our Port off Market Street Extension. Right now, the rust piles only put a handful of people to work; I think if we explore cargo services, small ferries and passenger ships, and other things which have worked well for ports in Portland and Boston, we can expand our workforces there.
At this point we have a very low unemployment rate in the city. I have noticed help wanted signs that are up. I think the question should be what can the city do to help you get into higher education so you can work in areas that you chose. The city should make sure that we have transportation to Granit State Community College. We should make sure you know about all the scholarships that the city has though our Prescott Park Trust. Lastly, we need to make sure that the guidance departments in the school are supporting you all.
Fortunately, Portsmouth has one of the lowest unemployment rates in New Hampshire and we want to keep it this way! One way that the City Council can help is by clearly communicating to the business community about the city's plans and priorities. Having unclear or ambiguous regulations can keep companies from making a choice to come to or stay in Portsmouth. The City Council also must make parking and transportation key priorities so that people can get to and from work.
Naturally, I am in favor of creating jobs and increasing employment opportunities, but not at the expense of the historic charm and character of the downtown area. Portsmouth already has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the State, and New Hampshire overall has one of the lower unemployment rates in the nation. I am solidly opposed to creating jobs via the erection of massive new structures in the downtown area so that a mini-avalanche of new bars, restaurants, retail stores, and shops can be opened, providing low-paying job opportunities for retail employees. If job creation is to be stimulated by new construction, let it be stimulated by construction at the Pease Tradeport or in the outlying areas where historic preservation is not a factor--not by means of runaway development in the downtown area. Destroying the city’s historic heritage and its charm and character is simply not a price that I am willing to pay for job creation.