Economic Inequality & Development


As your State Senator, I support economic development investments that are targeted to build stable and broadly-shared wealth within our communities.


Economic development partnerships have the potential to enliven neighborhood economies, open new job opportunities, and build new ownership possibilities for local residents. Alternately, economic development done poorly can take the form of inappropriate or undisciplined public benefits to corporate special interests. Too often, we’ve seen states and municipalities get caught in a race to the bottom for who can offer the biggest tax give-away to large corporations. We need to always make sure our development efforts are strengthening those in the city and state who need it most, and that we’re using our resources in the most efficient, effective way.

I fight regularly for funding to economic development programs that have a heavy impact in my district—from the Brownfields redevelopment fund for clean-up of polluted properties, to the Small Business Technical Assistance program, which has helped thousands of small, local business owners across the state open, stabilize, or grow. I also work with legislative colleagues, the executive branch, and local developers to ensure that rigorous goals are set—and evaluated—for minority- and local-resident job creation and wealth-building when public dollars are spent in our neighborhoods. In 2017 I helped ensure that our new recreational-marijuana law included strong provisions to ensure minority-community participation in both the regulation of the new industry and the wealth that it will inevitably create. These provisions are now considered by many to be the most progressive in the nation and a model for other states.

We must also continue the push for transparency and disciplined decision-making when it comes to our economic development dollars. I have filed and co-sponsored legislation calling for regular review of corporate tax credit spending—as we do with spending in our regular state budget, for “clawbacks” of tax credit dollars when recipient corporations fail to live up to their promises, and to prohibit taxpayer dollars from going to for-profit ventures with exorbitant ratios between their CEOs and their lowest-paid employees.
Finally, as your state senator, I will always be a strong voice not just for more jobs, but for good jobs. That means a fair minimum wage that’s indexed to inflation—just like legislators’ salaries—and paid family medical leave. It also means remembering that our public education system is the most proven jobs program we have. It’s our most powerful tool for making Massachusetts an attractive place for businesses in the new economy, and it’s our most reliable way to make sure our people get good-paying jobs, that can sustain families and neighborhoods.


Blog title

Holding signs saying "No service cuts" and "Save the Mission Hill trolley," protestors heard from state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz and Boston city councilors Kenzie Bok and Matt O'Malley.

By NBC Boston Staff | Nov 12, 2020

Dorchester Reporter

“There’s no reason it had to be this way, the situation we find ourself in now is due to years of deferred maintenance. Deferring maintenance is a habit that State leaders need to break,” Chang-Diaz said.

By Katie Trojano | Aug 14, 2019

Blog title

On July 1st, Sen. Chang-Díaz joined more than 300 volunteers across the MBTA system to canvass to stop the new #UnfairHikes.

Jul 01, 2019

The Boston Globe

The nascent legal pot industry is dominated by white players and out-of-state corporations. Enter state Senator Sonia Chang-Díaz.

May 17, 2019

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