CONCORD, NH - New Hampshire is struggling to bring in and retain highly educated tech workers. There is a shortage of tech workers in New Hampshire, and that prevents the Granite State from living up to its potential as a tech hub. Our population is aging and young Granite Staters and college graduates are constantly being drawn out of New Hampshire into states like Massachusetts and New York by the promise of high paying tech jobs. New Hampshire needs incentives to keep recent graduates in state, draw in workers from other states, and make New Hampshire a competitive home for the tech industry.
We also need to recognize the toll the student loan debt crisis is taking on our state. If you are forced to mortgage your career with student loans it is harder to mortgage a house. Debt ties the hands of the next generation of New Hampshire workers and without relief they will continue leaving the Granite State.
Student loan forgiveness is a win win. Granite Staters win through debt relief allowing them to stay in New Hampshire and increase their personal investment in New Hampshire greater purchasing power and the ability to buy their first home. Businesses win by gaining a deep and well educated workforce who can focus on their jobs without their student loan debt constantly hanging over their heads.
There are about 3,000 tech jobs that have remained open in New Hampshire due to our workforce shortage, and New Hampshire firms are struggling to fill positions that would allow them to operate at their full potential. New Hampshire Democrats support SB 41, which provides up to $5,000 in employer matched funds for student loan forgiveness for tech workers who stay in the state for 3 years.
New Hampshire has the highest average student loan debt in the country, but the short sighted Republican majority allowed this bill to die, continuing to refuse to do anything to help recent graduates suffering from the Republican majority’s failure to adequately support the University System of New Hampshire or limit increasing tuitions. Republican inaction hurts New Hampshire: it hurts the tech industry as it tries to hire Granite Staters, and it hurts the next generation of New Hampshire workers as they try to start their lives in New Hampshire.
A Democratic Senate Majority will look forward, be forward thinking, and foster the growth of businesses struggling to stay in New Hampshire because of the existing Republican Senate majority. Democratic Senators support New Hampshire families trying to make ends meet in New Hampshire as they balance student loan debt and their desire to keep New Hampshire as a place they can call home.