Because Connecticut Innovations, that quasi public agency self-charged with leading um, innovation in Connecticut has done such a great job creating tech jobs, Governor Malloy and the DECD are throwing more money at them. From the Hartford Business Journal:
Connecticut Innovations Inc. announced the ambitious business-development program Wednesday, one it says aims to build jobs.
The $125 million in new funding from the state was included in Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's jobs bill, which was signed into law in October, CI said.
CI says its plan is to match this state funding for each of the next five years with its existing cash and funding from its investment returns.
"CI's capabilities are essential to the success of the technology sector in Connecticut," Malloy said in a statement announcing the initiative. "Adding to their tool kit and providing more funding will allow the organization to accelerate its success in creating jobs and growing Connecticut's economy."
Included in the plan is:
• $4 million per year for CI's pre-seed program, which offers loans to support the formation of new Connecticut technology companies.
• $22 million per year for seed stage and Series A investments, which help entrepreneurs grow existing businesses, and for follow-on investments in CI portfolio companies.
• $6.5 million per year for a newly developed loan program, which provides growth and working capital for technology companies.
• $7 million per year for the aggressive recruitment of emerging technology companies nationally and internationally. CI plans to work with the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) and other state agencies to design a relocation incentive package, similar to the governor's "First Five" initiative.
• $4 million per year to help Connecticut companies capture more of the federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) funds each year, as well as increase industry partnerships and the state's technology talent pipeline.
• $4.8 million per year to establish technology business accelerator hubs, which will provide support services to startups, and to create a corporate technology transfer initiative.
Well enough people have been saying “Danger Will Robinson” to fill the airwaves and the tubes with dire warnings and stuff to stimulate the milk, candles and bread industry. Ever wonder why we have this collective urge to shop before impending weather disasters? I’ve always been baffled. It’s not like you can’t just turn on the tap and get drinking water and scrounge through the cupboards for a few saltiness to tide you over the hour or so when mother nature truly has wrathed her worst. But I digress.
Below is the link to the Governor’s everything you need to know about the hurricane.
More importantly if you live in an area prone to flooding, take a look at your storm drains and clear out trash and debris so the water has someplace to go. Broken twigs and tree branches are what beavers use to build dams. So why let urban storm drains in your neighborhood create problems? You and your neighbors will reap the drier benefits. Don’t forget your own gutters. And tie down patio and deck furniture.
With all the focus on Malloy’s budget cuts, we lost sight of Los Angeles’ Carmageddon. If you missed it, this was the weekend where California DOT closed the 405 so that a bridge could get demolished. The bridge needed to be demolished because they are widening the 405 to create another HOV lane. Okay, with me thus far? The 405 links Los Angeles with the valley. It is how people get to and from LAX, the major airport. It was, a big deal, hence the suffix of “mageddon.”
Doom, lost business, incessant media alerts and general projections of total gridlock was the buzz build up. But what happened? People stayed away, traffic was manageable and get this, the contractors all finished early. Where the 405 was supposed to re-open at 5 am on Monday morning, they re-opened it at noon on Sunday.
Connecticut of course, has numerous endless construction projects over in DOT land. Have we ever seen a road closure, complete the construction early so we can get on with driving? Not in my lifetime. Maybe it’s time for Malloy to take that axe over in Conn DOT management.
Finally we have an administration that gets how to enact budget reductions, Tuesday’s press release outlines the budget numbers departments have to hit along with the helpful reduction in personnel to get there suggestions. I’ve liked to it below.
With some budgets, labor is the only way to achieve savings. But with others, now it’s time to figure out how to get there. Here’s where forced ranking can help the budget challenged figure out who is essential and not. In forced ranking you start with the most indispensable person/position. In simplistic terms, if you were in the ice cream making businesses the most indispensable person starts with whoever makes the ice cream because without the product, you have no business. Now let’s say you have 5 ice cream makers, who is ranked one? The answer should be the person who can manage themselves most, since if you only had one employee, the ice cream maker, then they would have to do all the rest of the jobs to at least get to a functional level of business.
What isn’t evident from this process is the manager making this list. The sign of a good manager of course, is being able to replace themselves with employees that actually run the business. That should free up the manager for more strategic tasks, like growing the business. Too often managers don’t do that, but that’s another post for another day.
The Connecticut departments that don’t cut management are doomed. I hope someone is paying attention up in Hartford.
Attached, please find Governor Malloy’s proposal to close the $1.6 billion deficit. A few points:
- These are the recommendations that were sent to the legislature, and if enacted, it will be left to each Commissioner to determine how to achieve the savings outlined. They will have to reduce their agency budgets by the dollar amounts you see, and OPM thinks the number of suggested layoffs will help them get there. Some commissioners might choose to lay off more people to get to that number, some might choose to lay off a lower number — and find additional savings elsewhere.
- The total proposed number of personnel reductions (6,466) include 1,000 positions which are vacant and will be eliminated, in addition to 5,466 layoffs.
Budget Balancing Plan
All good political campaigns are like a story–they have a beginning, middle and end. Fortunately we are in that last bit of the cmapign stories of our Senate and Gubernatorial races. The days of mailers and lawn signs are soon to end, but the lack of fun in these races is such a huge turnoff that maybe we need some campaign soundtrack mojo. In song. To keep the load times to a minium, I’m not going to embed the videos, but here’s my analysis of the campaigns thus far:
Take a Chance On Me-ABBA
One Way Or Another-Blondie
Can’t Buy Me Love-The Beatles
Careless Memories- Duran Duran
Slip Sliding Away -Paul Simon
A View To A Kill-Duran Duran
I Will Survive- Gloria Gaynor
Change The World-Eric Clapton
Every Day I Write The Book-Elvis Costello
Who Are You-The Who
Tom Sawyer- Rush
Upside Down- Diana Ross
A few years ago, I interviewed all the candidates for Governor and came away with the impression that Dan Malloy was a policy wonk that would make Connecticut work better. The gist back then in June of 2006;
In the past six years, Main Street in Middletown has changed from empty store-fronts to a more pedestrian inviting look of small businesses like Java Palooza. It’s the kind of small scale growth that has been a small bright spot for the Connecticut economy recently. In this setting it seemed natural that chatting with Malloy would turn to themes of the Connecticut economy.
“I think Connecticut has some surprising opportunities” said Malloy. “We have the capacity to compete in more areas than people think.”
To Malloy, Connecticut is a land of opportunity, but he admits that he worries more about what happens if Connecticut doesn’t change course.
For weeks, in some cases months, the campaign to become the next fill-in-the-blank has been occupying the best and brightest political flunkie minds. Oh, maybe not, but there’s certainly been a fair amount of trees sacrificed to the alter of why the “other guy” is is bad, American pie is good, and bright photos of aging white men who want you to think they can rock the house, legislatively that is. Then there’s Linda McMahon, who no longer wants to rock the ring, is not an aging white man, and plans to introduce chair throwing as a debating tactic in the Senate. But that’s a post for little later.
A scan of the news headlines concerning the race to become the governor of Connecticut reveals that we still haven’t gotten over our fixation over the race itself. Tom Foley wants you to know that he’s filed a lawsuit against Mike Fedele because Foley’s campaign doesn’t want Fedele’s campaign to qualify for $2 million in public funding.
Dan Malloy’s campaign wants you to know that Ned Lamont is too chicken to debate him. Ned Lamont’s campaign says Ned is working hard on speaking to the voters directly.
Oz Griebel still can’t get his name into the headlines.
What they’re all saying, somewhere buried in all this campaign news, is that they’re the guy to turn Connecicut around and create jobs.