UMass Dartmouth Professor Forecasts Continued Growth for Next Year
A UMass-Dartmouth professor is forecasting economic growth to continue for at least a while. Professor Michael Goodman is Director of the UMass-Dartmouth Public Policy Center. He told WBSM's Brian Thomas on Saturday, the picture looks bright for the next 12 months or so.
"The best information that we have suggests that we have enough momentum in the state and the nation to continue to expand at a reasonable pace over the next 12 months," Goodman said. "Out further than that, the crystal ball gets a little blurry."
Goodman says a number of imbalances are building in the economy, pointing toward a drop-off. One issue he says is the lack of qualified workers available for companies wishing to expand.
"Either those workers are already employed, they don't have the skills to meet the requirements of the job, or they don't live in an area that allows them to have access to that job." Goodman added, "that's been a challenge for our expanding firms which in many cases, have a hard time finding the people they need to fuel the growth."
Goodman acknowledges that while growth is very evident in some parts of the commonwealth, other parts of the state are still struggling to attract large companies and better-paying jobs.
He suggests the Southcoast has not received the "bounce" that other areas of the state have enjoyed. "A lot of that has to do with what's been driving our economic growth. Here in Massachusetts, it's been fueled by innovation, technology, health care, science and research and development, and those parts of the state that are strong in those fields have been disproportionately benefiting."
Goodman will be addressing a group of state lawmakers this coming week who are working on budget projections for the next fiscal year.