NEW LONDON, CT (WFSB) - Connecticut's governor-elect focused on economic opportunities during a meeting in New London on Friday.
Gov.-elect Ned Lamont met with business and community leaders at the Garde Arts Center, Inc.
Lamont said they spoke about jumpstarting the economy in eastern Connecticut, revitalizing New London's port and seizing opportunities like offshore wind power and creating good-paying jobs for all Connecticut residents.
"I really appreciate we have a bi-partisan group up here because we are working together to get this state moving again," Lamont said.
They're looking for help from Democrats and Republicans to help revitalize the region.
"It's refreshing to have a governor elect and a lieutenant governor elect that have come and invited us and embraced us to have a seat at the table,” said Republican State Senator Heather Somers.
"There are emerging opportunities and we know there will be more opportunities for trades people, that's why we want to work with labor and educational institutions,” said Lt. Gov.-elect Susan Bysiewicz.
They're looking to create jobs in the southeastern part of the state with wind power.
John Humphries says the U.S. needs to catch up to Europe, where wind creates 10 percent of power.
"New London is poised to be a hub for this industry throughout the region and it will bring lots of jobs and economic development,” Humphries said.
The other focus in providing more workers for the area's largest employer, Electric Boat.
The defense contractor has created thousands of jobs but is in need of skilled workers. Some of the training has already started.
"Norwich Free Academy worked on a public private partnership with getting high school students involved in the trades. RHAM high school up in Hebron has been accepted as another hub to work on that,” said Democratic State Senator Cathy Osten.
New London has struggled with high employment in certain areas.
Mayor Michael Passero said there are still many empty storefronts in downtown, but he sees potential.
He added that having better paying jobs will help the city.
"The governor elect came to New London because he has seen what's going on, not just in New London but as a region. There are so many opportunities right now and this an an opportunity that will help the state," Passero said.