|WV Press Release Sharing|
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Gov. Jim Justice has issued a proclamation, calling for the West Virginia Legislature to convene in Special Session at 11 a.m. on today, Jan. 10.
The proclamation lists several items for the Legislature to consider and act upon, all relating generally to economic development.
The first is a bill establishing a “West Virginia Industrial Advancement Act,” which provides certain tax incentives, based upon very significant investment and employment thresholds, for labor and capital intensive heavy industrial facilities to locate in the state.
The next five are supplemental appropriations bills, capitalizing upon the state’s spectacularly strong revenues and investing in West Virginia’s future to assure jobs and goodness for generations to come.
The appropriations the Governor is requesting the Legislature to make will be used by our Department of Economic Development to secure tremendous private investment all around the state. These appropriations will mark the largest investment in economic development in this state’s history, and will pay untold dividends in recruiting businesses, their employees and families, and further private investment in West Virginia.
|The Governor has directed his agencies to maintain, and the Legislature has supported and passed, flat budgets for the last three years. This has resulted in surpluses available for necessary one-time improvements to infrastructure like roads and bridges and funding for other vital services. |
As of today, the state has well in excess $400 million in surpluses over our estimates, and that means our state revenues can be put toward investing in West Virginia’s future.
For years now, we have focused on attempting to incentivize businesses to locate in West Virginia, and on attempting to retain and grow our population.
Under Governor Justice’s tenure, our state has diversified, tourism is off the charts, manufacturing is growing, we haven’t forgotten our coal miners or our gas workers, high tech and higher education are on the move, and on and on and on.
Flatly put, West Virginia is the rocketship ride and the envy of the nation.
Recruiting additional businesses to the state and helping existing West Virginia businesses to expand their operations and add employees to their payrolls are the best hope for West Virginia’s and West Virginians’ futures.
When attempting to recruit businesses today, states compete with one another. In the past, other states with larger budgets have often offered incentives that price West Virginia out of the market. NOT ANYMORE! When we find a good prospect offering investment, jobs, and growth, therefore, it is paramount that the state does its best to compete for that business – for investment, jobs, and growth.
Today, thanks to our conservative approach over the past few years, West Virginia is positioned to finally step into the fight on equal terms. West Virginia is positioned financially to be able to compete, and offer the incentives today’s Fortune 500 businesses and savvy entrepreneurs alike seek when determining where to locate or expand their operations in the US.
Stay tuned for announcements of potential investments next week.