The Van Wert County Courthouse

Wednesday, Jun. 19, 2024

State rep. has economic column

An issue I have taken up as a top priority during my first term as your state representative is workforce and business development. The key to long-term, stable economic success in Ohio often comes down to one thing-employment. As a conservative, I believe in policies that encourage economic development and support the workforce, both through education and business-friendly reforms.

Craig Riedel

Through this special, three-column series, I’ll be focusing on workforce and business development at the state level, what that means for northwestern Ohio, and my legislative goals on this front.

One of the biggest drivers of business development is JobsOhio, a private non-profit corporation that collaborates with the state to drive job creation and new capital investment. Since 2011, more than 459,000 new private sector jobs have been created-this increase in competitiveness can be credited to the establishment of a business-friendly climate, tax reforms, and JobsOhio’s development platform.

JobsOhio recently turned its focus to several new programs with the goals to bring new companies to Ohio, help our existing businesses expand, and assist companies to meet workforce needs. Its SiteOhio authentication program is increasing the inventory of sites where infrastructure is in place and due diligence is completed, which means these properties are ready for development, saving businesses time and money. Additionally, its Research and Development Grant Program strives to make our state more attractive for manufacturing, production, and high-tech jobs.

Lastly, JobsOhio also created a unique talent acquisition service that offers customized talent development programs related to specific projects that will help new and expanding businesses meet skilled workforce needs to fill positions. JobsOhio partners with the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, community colleges, universities, and local workforce resources and works in tandem with the Regional Growth Partnership in northwest Ohio on all of these initiatives.

The 82nd House District and the rest of the region has already experienced much investment due to these programs and policies. From an $8 million investment and 50 new jobs at Cooper Farms in Van Wert County, to multiple expansions in high-tech fields in Defiance County, our area continues to be primed for more development. In my next column of this series, I’ll look at the challenges northwestern Ohio still faces as it strives to grow economically.

–Craig Riedel, state representative, 82nd Ohio House District

POSTED: 10/19/17 at 7:50 am. FILED UNDER: Opinions