Mayor Ras Baraka answers questions about living and working in Newark.

Jessica Baker

Does Mayor Baraka really believe that the working wage (including minimum wage) is enough for an original Newarker to afford these new lofts and buildings? And I don’t mean the lottery rent, I’m talking market price.

Mayor Baraka: There are Newarkers who can afford market rent. Everybody in Newark does not work below the minimum wage. About 30% of the city lives below the poverty line but our goal is to have an integrated community. We don’t want to concentrate poverty in one area and wealth in another. So we work to have units that are for -people who make more money and units for people who make less money.

Melissa Lyte

How do I as a Newark resident get a foot in at companies like Audible so I can live and work in Newark instead of commuting to the city?

Mayor Baraka: Go to the Newark 2020 website,, and click the button that’s for residents. Be patient because there are still some things we are trying to work out. But the Newark 2020 website has a direct link to the companies and corporations that are in the city. That’s a good start.

Debbie Sampson   

How can I get a job cleaning up Newark streets?

Mayor Baraka: You can get a job down at the Newark Downtown District ( or go to any of the other special improvement districts. There is the Bergen-Lyons-Clinton Special Improvement District, there is a West Ward improvement district ( on South Orange Avenue and there are several other improvement districts that you can work for -privately to help clean up Newark. And, of course, you can apply for a sanitation job (