May 18, 2016
State Representative William Tong announced House and Senate passage of The Connecticut 500 Project – a private-public initiative focused on the goal of creating 500,000 new private sector jobs over the next 25 years. The legislation, an outgrowth of the Commission on Economic Competitiveness, would set, and seek to achieve, the state’s cornerstone economic development goals over the next two-plus decades.

Representative Tong, the original legislative sponsor and now co-chair of the Commission on Economic Competitiveness, said, “The Connecticut 500 Project will forge a true partnership between business and public-sector leadership in this state. Together, Connecticut will reassert itself as one of the strongest economies in the nation and in the world.”

The Connecticut 500 governing board will propose legislation, leverage public and private investment in the state, solicit private funds to match public dollars, and evaluate and help to set Connecticut’s current and future economic development policies. The Commission on Economic Competitiveness will solicit bids from leading business consulting firms to assist the Commission in designing and establishing The Connecticut 500 Project and its operations.

“This is a long-term, generational approach to our economic health and well-being,” Rep. Tong said. “I am extremely proud of the work of the Commission on Economic Competitiveness and Connecticut legislators who recognized the time to act is now.”

CT 500 seeks to:

Increase, the state’s population by 5,000 new residents
Create 500 new startup businesses based on intellectual property developed in the state
Increase the annual number of students graduating from each state college and university
Place Connecticut among the top five states with respect to economic growth, public education, quality of life, and private sector employee salary
Maintain Connecticut’s top five ranking with respect to productivity, higher education and per capita income

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