New Jersey Sen. Barbara Buono, the Democrat running against Gov. Chris Christie in this year’s gubernatorial race, has announced her plan to revitalize the Garden State’s urban communities.

Sen. Barbara Buono (

Buono believes the plan tackles high unemployment, failing schools, rising poverty and persistent gun violence, and offers reforms that will bolster these areas.

“Our urban communities are essential drivers of economic development and the epicenter of our diverse culture that bonds us all as New Jerseyans,” said Buono. “This plan affirms my commitment to urban areas by taking advantage of their strengths and addressing difficult problems head on to strengthen the workers and families who live there."

The candidate is calling for the expansion early childhood education and full day kindergarten while ensuring that all public schools are fully funded in accordance with the School Funding Reform Act. Christie has criticized Buono for failing to detail how she will pay for this.

Targeted tax break to small businesses is another facet of the plan. Buono wants to restore set-aside programs for women and minority owned small businesses in an effort to create jobs and empower local communities.

“At this critical time, urban communities need education, jobs and opportunity,” says Buono. “With a Buono administration in Trenton, that’s what they can expect.”