Accomplishments

Gov. Patrick signing utility bill in Lunenburg

Focused on creating jobs

Jen Benson is focused on getting Massachusetts back to work by streamlining the permitting and regulation process to get new businesses off the ground quickly, by supporting education and workforce training to train workers for the high skill jobs that are already available, and by passing transparency reforms that will allow us to see which corporate tax breaks are working, and which ones should be ended.

Jen helped pass two important pieces of legislation that will help create jobs and strengthen our small businesses.

  • The Economic Development Bill created expedited permitting in growth districts to get new businesses off the ground quickly, lowered capital gains taxes from 5.3% to 3% for long-term investments to allow for more investment and growth, and created a sales tax holiday to boost retail sales.
  • The Small Business Healthcare Bill works to control skyrocketing costs by providing rate hike oversight. It also provided for prescription drug discounts to give consumers a break on medication costs and contained an amendment Jen cosponsored which allows small businesses to work together to purchase insurance at group rates, helping to reduce costs and level the playing field with large corporations.

Working for change

  • Strengthening the Economy Jen helped save small businesses $391 million dollars by freezing the unemployment insurance rate schedule and she will continue to work for strategic, targeted investments to create new jobs.
  • Showing Independence Jen voted against House leadership and her party when the budget did not provide adequate funding for local aid. She will continue to stand up for your interests over special interests.
  • Protecting Consumers Jen worked to write and pass consumer protection legislation to hold utility companies accountable after the 2008 ice storm.
  • Supporting Public Schools Jen worked to protect local aid and regional transportation funding from drastic cuts. She also wrote legislation to help school districts and families with special needs children.

Changing the culture on Beacon Hill

When she was elected to the Lunenburg School Committee in 2003 Jen helped change the culture from one of distrust to one of accountability. She is working to do the same thing in the state legislature. Jen helped pass three historic reform packages and is committed to continuing the fight to restore accountability and transparency on Beacon Hill.

  • Ethics Reform bans all gifts to public official, gives more powers to AG to investigate corruption and allows larger penalties, making it harder for special interests to influence public policy.
  • Pension Reform saves the Commonwealth millions of dollars by eliminating the “one-day rule” and other abuses of the system that eroded the public trust in state institutions.
  • Transportation Reform has already saved $268.3 million dollars by abolishing the Massachusetts Transportation Authority and eliminating redundant agencies.

Advocating for your town

Jen made a difference in district towns by:

  • Pushing to get a better design for the South Acton train station.
  • Securing funding for school district transition costs to support Ayer and Shirley in creation of a new regional school district.
  • Working to restore and protect school transportation funding for Boxborough.
  • Delivering special legislation to enable a town center wastewater project for Harvard.
  • Writing and passing utility consumer protection legislation after 2008 ice storm in Lunenburg.