The three co-chairs of the House New Democrat Coalition (NDC), Representatives Jim Davis (FL-11), Ron Kind (WI-03), and Adam Smith (WA-09), issued the following joint press release on the 2004 New Democrat e-genda.

The New Democrat Coalition is a leading force in Congress for growing the U.S. economy through technological innovation and has, for the past six years, committed itself to providing the intellectual and policy framework necessary to achieve its goals.  This framework, known as the e-genda, outlines the specific action items necessary to achieve its goal of creating more jobs for Americans, while retaining the U.S. position as a global leader in the creation of jobs in the new economy.

“By offering proposals to jumpstart the tech sector, promote highly skilled, American workers and foster innovation and business development, the New Democrat Coalition’s e-genda provides all the tools needed to recharge our nation’s economic engine,” said NDC co-chair Jim Davis.

This year’s e-genda, highlights seven areas of concentration that will boost our economy and facilitate the growth of cutting edge jobs.:

1.      Retraining American workers for jobs of the future.

2.      Increasing the number and quality of math, science and engineering graduates in the U.S.

3.      Developing the world’s best IT infrastructure

4.      Fueling the research and development necessary to keep the U.S. at the forefront of technology

5.      Promoting employee ownership to incentivize and attract employees

6.      Encourage capital investment in the U.S. economy

7.      Strengthening the economy through fiscal discipline

"Our competitiveness in the global market relies both on the strength of our workforce and the progress of our technology sector; the NDC e-genda maps out key initiatives to stimulate job growth, encourage innovation and promote technological development," said NDC co-chair Ron Kind.

“Lifelong learning and access to job training is critical in today’s ever-changing economy. I, along with my NDC colleagues, am committed to creating a business environment that fosters innovation and provides workers the training they need to assist them in finding jobs or advancing in their current jobs,” said NDC co-chair Adam Smith.

The entire text of the 2004 e-genda follows.

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New Democrat E-Genda 2004:

Agenda for Job Growth and Innovation

New Democrats have always recognized that innovation is the key to growing our economy and creating the cutting edge jobs of the future. Our goal remains advancing American technological and economic leadership by fostering an atmosphere of innovation that outpaces our rivals. To do so, we must make the financial and intellectual commitment to these issues, not simply provide America with empty rhetoric. The impact of this effort has broad implications, including creating new U.S. jobs, keeping more jobs in the U.S., protecting our national security, maintaining U.S. global leadership, and improving our quality of life.

Retraining American workers for the jobs of the future.  New Democrats believe that lifelong learning and job training is critical to workers in the 21st Century.  We are committed to ensuring that those people who need job training receive services to assist in finding jobs or help in advancement of current job.  We believe that a comprehensive reexamination of government retraining programs is critically important.

Action Item #1:  As a first step in this process, the NDC support HR 3881, which expands Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) to include service workers.

Increasing the number and quality of math, science and engineering graduates in the US.   An atmosphere of innovation must be built on a foundation of education and a skilled workforce.  Quality education at all levels – most importantly strong math, science and engineering training - from early childhood through higher education, is critically important.  In China 70 percent of all college undergraduates received degrees in math, science and engineering. In the United States it's only 5 percent.  This issue is central to our ability to compete and win in the world marketplace.

Action Item #2: The NDC will continue to strongly advocate for full funding of No Child Left Behind, including teacher training for math and science education.

Action Item #3:  The NDC supports full funding of the Tech Talent bill.

Developing the world’s best IT infrastructure.  The rollout of high-speed broadband is an important driver to economic growth and a key differentiator from our global competitors.  Today, the US ranks 11th in the world in broadband access behind countries like Korea, Canada, Belgium and Japan. 

Action Item #4:  The NDC believes we must establish a national broadband plan.

Action Item #5: The NDC supports passage of a next generation broadband deployment tax credit

Fueling the research and development necessary to keep the US at the forefront of technology. Today, over 90 percent of R&D by US companies takes place in the US.  But to keep it here we must provide an atmosphere of innovation that make the US more attractive than anywhere else in the world.

Action Item #6: The NDC supports expanding and making permanent the R&D tax credit

Action Item #7:  The NDC supports increased funding for basic research through NSF, NASA, NIH and DOE.

Promoting employee ownership to incentivize and attract employees.  Stock options are a vital tool for furthering the atmosphere of innovation that has driven our nation’s technology leadership by giving employees a stake in their company.  

Action Item #8:The NDC supports passage of HR 3574, the Stock Option Accounting Reform Act.

Encourage capital investment in the US economy.  We must help the private sector create jobs while investing in the future growth of the new economy.

Action Item #9:  The NDC supports passage of HR 1162, the Invest in America Act, which would bring an estimated $135 billion of new capital into the U.S. economy to invest in hiring new U.S. workers, making infrastructure investments, or fueling R&D.

Strengthening the economy through fiscal discipline.  America’s deepening federal deficit and debt is causing investors to loose confidence in our economy. Left unchecked, the long term impact will be higher interest rates, which slow economic growth and penalize Americans who carry debt.

Action Item #10: The NDC will continue to work toward balancing the federal budget and paying down the nation’s debt.