Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Revitalizing Texas’s Economy: Creating Jobs and Providing Opportunities in Low-Income and Minority Areas


CONTACT: Kelly Love Johnson
(512) 771-8737

Revitalizing Texas’s Economy: Creating Jobs and Providing Opportunities in Low-Income and Minority Areas
Democratic Candidate for Governor Farouk Shami Releases his Policy on the Economy at Press Breakfast in Dallas

DALLAS/FORT WORTH—During a press breakfast on Tuesday, January 26, Farouk Shami discussed his policy to create new jobs for Texans and provide opportunities in low-income and minority areas of the state.

The economy of Texas is the second largest in the US and would be the 15th largest in the world if it were its own country. Our economic growth and opportunity has caused corporations and individuals from around the country to move to Texas. Yet, this growth has been somewhat uneven and has left behind entire regions and populations throughout our state. We must continue to foster economic growth, while paying special attention to ethnic groups and regions left behind by nearly two decades of Republican rule in Texas.

“All Texans have a right to have access to the American Dream,” said Shami. “We cannot continue to leave entire communities behind. My plan gives corporations incentives to place businesses that pay a living wage in areas where the jobs and money are needed most.”

Shami’s plan (see below for full details), includes: building small business incubators, creating green energy jobs, promoting border industry clusters, modernizing core infrastructure, creating high-paying jobs in disadvantaged areas, and tax incentive changes for employers considering relocating to those areas.

“I am pleased to announce my plan to bring a better future for Texas and to lead the way with jobs for a new economy,” said Shami.


Farouk Shami’s Plan for the Texas Economy

• Build Small Business Incubators

Farouk came to this country with very little money, yet he had something far more important: a dream—and the drive to achieve it. Entrepreneurs and small business owners are the backbone of the Texas economy and both embody the American dream and enable others to enjoy it as well. The state of Texas can help these people achieve success with both seed capital and educational business resources. We need to utilize the Texas Enterprise Fund (EF) to provide small grants to businesses employing 25 or fewer people that have a strong business plan and will be able to grow with the added capital, in addition to using the fund to close deals with large corporations. Furthermore, we ought to create partnerships with these businesses and public universities so business school faculty and students are available to help these entrepreneurs bring their dreams to reality.

• Create Green Energy Jobs

Texas has always been the energy capital of the United States. We can now utilize that background to become the green energy capital of the United States, taking advantage of the abundant wind and sunlight in the western part of the state. We have already taken the first steps in building wind farms in west Texas, and we should rapidly expedite their building. Furthermore, since wind tends to blow hardest at night, we can utilize the same transmission lines to bring solar power back during the day. The jobs created in initially setting up these facilities and continuing to maintain them will provide a powerful stimulus to the overall economy of Texas.

In addition, Farouk’s plan to insure that every Texas household has access to in-home solar panel systems to help cut down on electricity costs will also create a tremendous number of new, green-collar jobs.

• Promote Border Industry Clusters

Our border with Mexico represents a very important economic strength. We can help this area continue to grow by working with local officials along the border and their counterparts in Mexico and to create industry clusters along the border. This means we would build high-skill, capital-intensive operations on this side of the border that utilizes low-skill, affordable labor across the border.

• Modernize Core Infrastructure

One of the first things corporations look at when deciding whether to relocate is whether they will have access to transportation, energy, water and broadband lines that will fulfill their needs today and into the future. We can put Texans to work today to build new roads, ensure all communities have access to broadband internet access, expand the capacity of our electric grid, and ensure we have additional water resources to meet any projected future demand. This investment in tomorrow will yield real benefits well into the future by showing corporations that they will never face the problems currently experienced by companies in California.

• Create High Paying Jobs in Disadvantaged Areas

Economic growth for too long has been focused in the same affluent areas of our state’s major cities. We can counter this by offering corporations additional tax credits to move to areas that are economically disadvantaged, using an escalating scale to ensure the biggest credits go to those moving to the areas with greatest economic hardships. We can stipulate that these businesses must pay an average wage of at least $10 an hour living wage to ensure the jobs coming into these communities are real jobs that can help lift the area out of poverty.

  • Tax Incentive Changes

Farouk proposes to eliminate the ability of counties and municipalities to give tax incentives to employers looking to locate to the area. The problem with these schemes is that they end up producing few good jobs while providing a massive benefit to the company looking to locate in the area. Further, it adversely impacts existing taxpayers and businesses by burdening them with the increased taxes that result from infrastructure improvements needed for a new employer.

The key is to centralize at the state level and in exchange provide the local government with a payment from the state equal to the difference between what the business would actually pay without the incentive and what the business is actually paying under their incentive plan. This is the only way to stop the race to the bottom competition between local governments for new businesses and expanding businesses.

The money from this will come from the EF and increased sales tax revenues. Further, with the state managing the incentives, they will inevitably be smaller than what local governments are handing out now.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Farouk's Statement on Massachusetts Election Results

"The American people, from Massachusetts to Texas, are fed up with politics as usual and want to see actual results and not the same old all talk and no action. They voted out the Republicans in 2006 and 2008 because they were fed up with how things were going and are voting out Democrats now because they haven't seen anything done to fix America's very real problems. My business would fail if I didn't fix problems on a daily basis. That's the difference between being a political insider and a businessman and that's the reason I'm the best candidate to bring about real change in Texas and help lead the Democratic Party to victory in November."

Reposted from: http://www.faroukforgovernor.com/page/farouks-statement-on-massachusetts-election-results

Photo Highlights: Farouk Shami and Derrick King lead 32nd Annual MLK Parade in Houston, Texas


Monday, January 18, 2010

Farouk honored as Grand Marshall in 32nd Annual MLK Parade in Houston

Please join Farouk Shami in commemorating the memory of the late Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday, January 18th from 10:00am to 1:00pm.

Farouk is honored to be the Grand Marshall of the parade and will be accompanied by Derrick King, the nephew of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Mr. Shami was a nominee for the Dream Keeper Award which recognizes exemplary displays of committed service to the tenets of Dr. King, the ultimate dreamer, and the Reverend's ideals of social responsibility, political empowerment, diversity, racial harmony, nonviolence, and unselfish service.

For more information about the 32nd Annual MLK parade, please visit http://www.mlkgrandeparade.org

Farouk will attend the 22nd Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast at the George R. Brown Convention Center prior to participating in the parade.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

UNITY: Farouk Shami to host community dinner in Houston on January 14, 2010

Farouk Shami, Democratic Candidate for Governor of the State of Texas 2010 requests your presence at a private dinner.

Mr. Shami would like leaders in the community to participate in this meeting with the objective being to open dialogue establishing unity amongst the community and how best to achieve this goal in order to empower our communities.
The event will be held on January 14th, 2010 from 7PM until 10PM at AACC – Arab American Community Center, 10555 Stancliff Rd., Houston, Texas

We look forward to your presence and contribution in uniting our communities!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Farouk Shami nominated to receive a 2010 Dreamkeepers Award from the Black Heritage Society

Farouk Shami is a nominee for the 2010 Dreamkeepers Award amongst a list of prestigious Houstonians. Please log on to www.originalmlkparade.org, to cast your vote for Farouk Shami. Nominees will be honored during “The Dreamkeepers Awards Ceremony & Ball” on Friday, January 15, 2010, 7:00 P.M. at ONE AMERICA'S PLAZA, 2311 Canal St. @ Navigation St., Houston, TX 77003.

The Black Heritage Society is currently in preparation for The 32nd Annual "Original" Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade Celebration: “DREAMKEEPERS Weekend 2010,” Jan.15-18th. The “Dreamkeepers Award" embodies the essence and continuance of Dr. King's Dream through service to your community for the betterment of mankind and the protection of Civil Rights every where!

Farouk in the News: "It's time to stop pointing fingers and just flat out lying about scientific fact and take action to help Texans breathe clean air."

This article originally appears at: http://www.texastribune.org/blogs/post/2010/jan/08/tribblog-easy-steps-cleaner-air/#ixzz0cAbvVKM2

Excerpt from TribBlog: Clearing the Air by Reeve Hamilton, Texas Tribune

Democrat Farouk Shami says, "It's politicians like Bill White, Rick Perry and Kay Bailey Hutchison that have neglected our environment for years with political posturing. It's time for Texas to lead on this issue and as governor, I will focus on green, clean and renewable energy initiatives. It's time to stop pointing fingers and just flat out lying about scientific fact and take action to help Texans breathe clean air."

Join international guest artist Joe Anthony at a fundraiser for Farouk for Governor on Sunday, January 17, 2010

Event: "Hair Politics" - Houston - Jan 17th

Join international guest artist Joe Anthony at a fundraiser for Farouk for Governor on Sunday, January 17, 2010 from 7:30pm to 9:30pm at the Sheraton North Houston (near Bush airport) 15700 J.F.K. Boulevard in Houston, Texas 77032. Click here to purchase $30 Tickets