“Are we there yet?” is probably the most typical question that you might get from your child sitting in the backseat during a long road trip. However, the age-old inquiry is one that has been consistently buzzing around the Statehouse for the past couple of years too. While it is a question that was often asked by my children when they were younger, it also relates to the job situation in Indiana. As your state representative for District 63, I’m here to tell you that while we may not have reached our final destination yet, we are definitely on the road there.
New statistics released by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation recently touted the how successful our great state has been in growing and retaining jobs. As of late November, IEDC has already worked with 220 companies who have decided to expand or establish new business operations in Indiana. Not only is this great news for the state’s economy, but it means more jobs will be created as a result. This is no surprise, as Indiana ranks 1st in the Midwest in the Tax Foundations 2012 Business Tax Climate Index. Indiana has cut property taxes by one-third and established a constitutional cap on tax rates for all classes of property. Here in Southwest Indiana we are familiar with the I-69 project, a part of the Major Moves initiative which created 200 new construction and preservation projects and numerous employment opportunities. Another key initiative for the state has been “Buy Indiana” – a project that focuses on putting $1.9 billion back into the Indiana economy by directing state agencies to purchase good from Indiana businesses.
I have remained absolutely determined to keep Indiana’s unemployment rates low. Since the low point of the recession, Indiana has grown by focusing on and creating private sector jobs at nearly double the pace of the nation – 6.6 percent versus 3.8 percent. Additionally, 21, 893 private sector jobs were projected in 2012 alone. With companies such as Finish Line and Toyota investing in bringing their business to Indiana, more opportunities for jobs are being created daily. Hoosiers are beginning to find employment opportunities again because we because we are focused on creating an economic climate that is conducive to job growth and retention, which in turn is making Indiana the envy of other states.
As the new Chair of the Committee on Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development, I will be sure to keep you up to date with the progress that we are making during the upcoming 2013 Legislative Session. I believe that the topic of jobs and fiscal integrity are what will keep Indiana afloat and continue to keep the Hoosier state at the top of the charts. You have my confidence, and the confidence of the Indiana House Republicans that we will carry on making great strides for the prosperity and economic stability of the Hoosier state as we continue our drive down the road to success.