Once again, Trenton found itself without a leader this week as Mayor Douglas H. Palmer spent his time campaigning in Florida for the man he tried so hard to defeat in the Democratic primary, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.
While having no time to develop commonsense solutions for the problems of Trenton, Mayor Palmer did find time, however, to call in to the radio show of favored Trentonian reporter L.A. Parker. The mayor discussed his efforts in bringing green policies, green industry, green jobs, and other environmentally-friendly initiatives to Trenton with Mr. Parker and his listeners.
In doing so, the mayor once again proved just how far away he is from the people of Trenton, when it comes to sensible public policy that might actually make a difference in the economic opportunities afforded to city residents.
The mayor pointed to a recent report commissioned by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, of which Mayor Palmer was the one-time president. The report looked at the current level of green industry in various metropolitan areas of the nation, and then made various projections and predictions on the size of the industry many years in the future.
Mayor Palmer was pleased to point out that the Trenton-Ewing metropolitan area already boasts nearly 9,000 so-called green jobs, and that projections 30 years into the future demonstrated a potential for nearly 70,000 jobs.
“We’re in the top 25 metropolitan areas for green jobs,” said Mayor Palmer, noting that the report found the Trenton-Ewing area was number 14 on the top 25 list of metropolitan areas with significant concentrations of green employment opportunities.
This report may indicate the existence of green jobs in the general area of Trenton, but despite Mayor Palmer’s enthusiasm, it really means nothing to the people of Trenton. Most of Trenton’s residents lack the training for such positions, and they do not even have a real opportunity to gain such training, thanks to the economic conditions of parts the city.
It’s evident that, despite the mayor’s constant traveling and faraway touting of so-called “green” initiatives, the reality in Trenton is that down-to-earth, realistic economic development that residents can actually take part it would better serve the city.
The presence of green jobs, probably outside of the city’s borders in Ewing or other neighboring towns (except for this), means nothing to the average resident and the next mayor better realize that and act accordingly.