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Governor promotes partnership for job growth | Politics

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Governor promotes partnership for job growth
Governor promotes partnership for job growth

PINE BLUFF, Ark. – Governor Mike Beebe spoke to the importance of creating a partnership between the State and local communities when it comes to economic development in a recent letter to Jefferson County economic development officials. 

That letter came days before polls will open and voters will begin casting ballots in an election to help create new jobs in Jefferson County.  Early voting in the countywide economic development election will take place at the Jefferson County Courthouse.  Voters will have the opportunity to generate dedicated revenue to create new jobs by attracting new businesses and industry and expanding existing employers in the county.

In a January 24 letter to the Economic Development Alliance of Jefferson County, Beebe said that, “With every request received by the [Arkansas Economic Development Commission], the first question asked is, “What has the community committed to the project?”  The goal is to have a true partnership between the community and the State.”

Beebe also said, “The State will attract companies to Arkansas, but it is up to the individual communities to sell themselves and offer local incentives to secure those companies.  We've seen this happen in communities willing to pass revenue initiatives that support local economic development—communities including Prescott, Fort Smith, Conway and Arkadelphia, which are becoming strong players in Arkansas.”

Beginning Tuesday, February 1st, voters will go to the polls to vote on a three-eights cent countywide economic development sales tax expected to generate $3.5 million per year in revenue for the Jefferson County Economic Development Corporation.  An independent and experienced board of community members will oversee that tax revenue and put it to use creating new jobs by attracting and retaining businesses, preparing new job sites, training and developing workers, advertising Jefferson County to potential employers, and providing incentives for businesses to locate in Jefferson County.

Voters may take advantage of early voting between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, February 1st through Friday, February 4th and on Monday, February 7th, before Election Day on Tuesday, February 8th.

For more information about the campaign or to get involved, voters can visit www.JobsforJeffersonCounty.com or join the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Jobs4Jefferson.