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Jobs and the Economy

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Senator Mark Udall meets with students the Babson-Carpenter Vocational School in Hayden, Colorado. The Babson-Carpenter School helps students learn the skills they need in local industries on the Western Slope, such as mining, construction and auto-repair. View more photos on Flickr

Several years since the economic crisis of 2008, Colorado families and small businesses are still struggling to regain their footing. Now more than ever, our government’s top priority must be to promote job creation and build a more robust economy. We all know that the private sector drives job growth, but government should do everything in its power to create the environment that allows businesses to expand. As your senator, my primary goal is to do everything I can to put the right policies in place to ensure Coloradans have the tools they need to succeed.

I believe Colorado’s economic success stories should be models for the nation. When I came to the Senate in 2009, I immediately launched my Colorado Workforce Tour and traveled the state to speak with workers, learn from their experiences and take their good ideas back to Washington. A focus of my conversations during the tour was that hallmark of American business: innovation. While there is no question that Coloradans are hurting as a result of global economic conditions, our state's economy is stronger than many others, thanks in part to our diverse, high-tech, innovative and entrepreneurial workforce.

Our strengths in fields like bioscience, aerospace, clean technology and information technology have translated directly into good-paying jobs for Coloradans and business investment in the state.

For example, Colorado's clean-technology sector – those businesses that focus on developing technologies for the renewable energy and energy efficiency markets – grew at a rapid pace of 37 percent between 2007 and 2012. Colorado’s aerospace economy is the second largest in the nation, providing more than 65,000 workers across private, civil and military sectors with good-paying jobs. And Colorado is also home to an impressive array of bioscience research institutions and over 600 bioscience companies that are fostering entrepreneurial activity and biomedical breakthroughs.

We must encourage this type of groundbreaking work to continue. Supporting innovation means creating the right conditions for American entrepreneurship and job creation, and allowing American workers and businesses to reach their full potential. This means restructuring the tax code to make it simpler and more supportive of innovation.

For more information about where I stand on these topics and what I'm working on, see the Taxes, Fiscal Responsibility and Bridging the Partisan Divide sections of my website.

We also need to encourage people with great innovative ideas, no matter where they were born, to develop those ideas right here in America. To that end, I joined with Senator Flake, a Republican from Arizona, to reintroduce the bipartisan StartUp Visa Act. This common sense bill, which was strongly endorsed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, will help create U.S. jobs by encouraging foreign entrepreneurs – specifically, foreign-born graduates of U.S. universities and lawful immigrants already in the country as professional H-1B workers – to start businesses in the United States.

Among other things, supporting innovation also means investing in science and technology to keep Colorado and the nation on the cutting edge. It also means training the next generation for the jobs of the future. A well-educated workforce with the skills necessary to innovate and lead is the greatest asset we can have and will be the foundation for American success in the 21st century.

For more information about where I stand on science, technology and education — especially the critical “STEM” fields — and what I'm working on, see the Science and Technology and Education sections of my website.

Yet until we get our federal budget under control and rein in our structural deficits and long-term debt, both the private and public funding needed to invest in our future will always be in doubt. I believe that one of the most productive ways Congress can help spur economic growth is by demanding good government initiatives and implementing a responsible, comprehensive plan for fiscal reform. That’s why I have introduced an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to require the federal government to balance its budget each and every year. It’s also why we need to pass comprehensive reforms similar to those recommended by the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles deficit-reduction commission. While I don't agree with all of its recommendations, the Bowles-Simpson Commission’s report is a serious, common sense plan that would reduce our long-term debt and deficits, and Congress should use it as a starting point to producing its own deficit reduction plan.

For more information, I invite you to visit my Fiscal Responsibility page to find out about my efforts to address our growing national debt.

As we continue down the path of economic recovery, I’ll keep working with my colleagues in both parties to ensure the government is fighting for Colorado families and small businesses, not Wall Street special interests. Now is a time when we must put partisanship and other differences behind us and work for the good of all Americans.

Regional Offices

Northwest Region
P.O. Box 866
Clark, CO 80428
P: 303-650-7820

Northeast Region
801 8th Street
Suite 140A
Greeley, CO 80631
P: 970-356-5586

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West Slope Region
400 Rood Avenue
Suite 220
Grand Junction, CO 81501
P: 970-245-9553

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Denver Metro Area Region
999 18th Street
Suite 1525, North Tower
Denver, CO 80202
P: 303-650-7820

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Southern Colorado Region
107 West B Street
Pueblo, CO 81003
P: 719-542-1701

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Four Corners Region
954 East 2nd Avenue
Suite 106
Durango, CO 81301
P: 970-247-1047

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Pikes Peak Region
2880 International Circle
Suite 107
Colorado Springs, CO 80910
P: 719-471-3993

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San Luis Valley Region Office
609 Main Street
Suite 205
Alamosa, CO 81101
P: 719-589-2101

Regional Information

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