Delegate Mark Keam - Virginia's 35th House District

Delegate Keam joins Governor McDonnell to Announce Jobs Agenda for 2011


This morning, I joined Governor Bob McDonnell, Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling, Speaker of the House of Delegates Bill Howell, Commerce Secretary Jim Cheng and a group of bipartisan legislators and industry leaders to announce the "Opportunity at Work" agenda to be introduced in the 2011 General Assembly session. 

These budget amendment proposals are designed to continue creating jobs in Virginia to turn the economy around.Excerpt of the press release is below, but the full release of the agenda is on the Governor's website: 


For Immediate Release: December 15, 2010   

McDonnell, Bolling Announce "Opportunity At Work" Budget Initiatives
— Job Creation Measures Feature $54 million to Grow Virginia's Innovation Economy, Revitalize Economically Distressed Communities, Expand Small Business and Tourism and Train Workers for Virginia Businesses —

Builds on success of 2010 Jobs & Opportunity Agenda; Virginia ranks 3rd nationally in net new jobs created February- October 2010; up from 35th in 2009 

RICHMOND — Governor Bob McDonnell and Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling, Virginia's Chief Jobs Creation Officer, held a press conference at the Virginia State Capitol today to announce a series of budget amendments designed to help create an environment conducive for private sector job creation and increased economic opportunity in all regions of Virginia.  The $54 million in budget amendments are part of the McDonnell Administration's "Opportunity At Work" agenda and were largely generated from the work of the Governor's Economic Development and Jobs Creation Commission.  The Commission is co-chaired by Bolling and Senior Economic Advisor Bob Sledd. 

Speaking about the new initiatives, Governor McDonnell noted, "For the past year I have been focused on creating a 'Commonwealth of Opportunity' for Virginians, and there is no greater opportunity than that of a good paying and rewarding job.  These are tough economic times, and it is a tight budget.  However, last winter, through bipartisan collaboration, we came together to invest in job creation, and the General Assembly passed our 'Jobs and Opportunity Agenda,' sweeping legislation that provided new tools and incentives designed to encourage private sector job creation, grow existing Virginia businesses, attract new businesses and help start small ones.  To date, we have added 55,000 net new jobs, ranking Virginia in the top three states for job creation over the period."  

Governor McDonnell continued, "While these successes are encouraging, there is still much work to be done. Our job is to help the private sector create the good jobs our citizens need and deserve.  On Inauguration Day, I signed Executive Order #1 establishing the Economic Development and Jobs Creation Commission.  With the hard work from the Commission's members, and leadership from Lieutenant Governor Bolling, we have now developed another package of economic initiatives that will continue to build upon the successes we saw this past year.  I look forward to working with members from both sides of the aisle yet again to ensure that our economy can grow, our business owners and entrepreneurs can create new jobs, and Virginians are given every opportunity to succeed." 

Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling added, "Last year, the General Assembly stood with us in passing our Jobs and Opportunity Agenda, which was the most aggressive package of economic development investments in our state's history.  As a result, we have made solid progress over the past year in promoting economic growth and creating jobs.  This year, we will ask the General Assembly to stand with us once again and pass Part 2 of our Jobs and Opportunity Agenda, 'Opportunity At Work'.  These additional investments in proven job creation programs will enable us to continue to effectively compete for new business, industry and jobs, and advance key economic development strategies in important areas like technology, tourism, small business, workforce training and job creating tax reform.  I want to thank the members of the Governor's Commission on Economic Development and Job Creation for helping us craft these budget investments.  They did great work and their recommendations will enable us to remain the best place in America to do business." 

Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) commented, "A healthy private sector and a growing economy are keys to ensuring that businesses have money to invest, that Virginia's working men and women have jobs and opportunities, and that state government has the resources necessary to use in providing core services.  I commend the Governor's consistent and laser-like focus on strengthening Virginia's economic environment and am encouraged that his latest package of pro-growth, pro-jobs legislative initiatives already is attracting bipartisan support in the General Assembly." 

Delegate Mark Keam (D- Vienna) remarked, "Entrepreneurs in Northern Virginia and across the commonwealth are looking towards innovative ideas to grow their businesses, generate more revenue and increase jobs.  Even though the economy is tough right now, we are fortunate to have many companies looking to expand, "go green," adopt new technologies, enter new markets and move to Virginia.  The more the state can do to help facilitate this innovation through job creation initiatives, like those announced today, the more successful Virginia will be in the future.  I'm glad to work in a bipartisan way to advance our number one priority of job creation and economic development."

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