Last night Governor Patrick delivered his 6th State of the Commonwealth Address. During his speech he outlined his administrations priorities for the coming year. Jobs, health care, community college, and homeless were among the issues discussed during the speech. Below you will find text from the address as well as links to related news article.
BOSTON — On Monday, Gov. Deval Patrick delivered his annual State of the State address. Here are his remarks.
Lieutenant Governor and fellow Constitutional Officers, Madame President, Mr. Speaker and Members of the Senate and of the House, Members of the Judiciary, Members of the Cabinet and of our Administration, Mayor Menino and other Municipal Officials, Reverend Clergy and most especially fellow Citizens of Massachusetts.
Good evening and thank you for joining me for my annual report on the state of our Commonwealth.
I would like to start by acknowledging and thanking our First Lady, Diane Patrick. Diane, I so appreciate your leadership in your public life and your patience in your private one. I know we all do.
And let us all acknowledge and thank the relatives, friends and neighbors from Massachusetts who are serving today in the military. We appreciate you – and your families – for your service to our Commonwealth and our country. A special welcome home to Senator Rush who is here. Representative Parisella who is here. Both have returned from combat duty in Iraq safely and we are so pleased.
* * *
This is my sixth speech of this kind. In that time, the world has experienced dramatic change and even turmoil. A global economic collapse. Slow job growth. Crumbling infrastructure. Growing inequality. A public craving change.
Periods of challenge and uncertainty are not new – not in Massachusetts and not in history. What defines us is not the challenge, but how we meet it. We remember with gratitude the generations before ours who rose to the challenges of their time and left for us a better Commonwealth. Thanks to them, many of us in this room tonight sit where our parents and grandparents could hardly imagine.
Now we face our test. It is a test for our time and for the future. And while others elsewhere in positions like yours and mine succumb to division and stalemate, we here pulled together and, for the good of the Commonwealth, made hard choices.
Like every state, we cut spending and headcount, and slimmed down programs or eliminated some. But we also chose to invest in education, in health care and in job creation – because we all know that educating our kids, having health care you can depend on, and a good job is the path to a better future.
That’s why today our students lead the nation in overall achievement and the world in math and science.
That’s why we lead the nation in health care coverage with over 98 percent of our residents insured.
That’s why we have moved from 47th in the nation in job creation in 2006 to 5th in the nation in the last two years, and why our state’s economy is growing faster than the national growth rate.
That’s why we lead the nation in energy efficiency and in veterans’ services.
And it’s also why we have not only closed our budget gaps, eliminated our structural deficit, and achieved the highest bond rating in our history, but – with labor at the table – made the kinds of meaningful reforms in the pension system, in municipal health benefits, in our schools, in our transportation and so much more that had eluded our predecessors for a long, long time.
None of this is happening by accident.
Auto insurance rates fell 13 percent in the last couple of years, the largest drop in America – not by accident but because we chose to reinvent that system and introduce managed competition.
The clean energy industry grew nearly 7 percent in Massachusetts last year, and added thousands of kilowatts of renewable generation and thousands of jobs – not by accident but because we passed the Green Communities Act and joined the world’s fundamental shift towards efficiency and renewable energy.
A thousand families moved out of shelters and motels and into permanent housing last year – not by accident but because we chose to move toward a “housing first” strategy, to work to end homelessness for good.
This and much more of the progress we have made together is happening because of the choices we have made together, choices inspired by our generational responsibility, our commitment to leave to others a better Commonwealth than we found.
Click here to read the remainder of the address.
Below are links to related news articles:
WBUR: Patrick Outlines Initiatives In State Of The State Address
The Boston Globe: Patrick Seeks Broad Changes for Community Colleges