SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH—Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman officially became chair of the National Governors Association (NGA) today during the closing plenary session of the NGA Annual Meeting. Delaware Gov. Jack Markell was named vice chair.
Gov. Heineman announced his chair’s initiative, Growing State Economies, which will provide governors and other state policymakers with a set of policy options that have been shown to foster job growth. A major emphasis will be on understanding how a small business becomes a fast-growing firm and what policies support that transformation.
“Economic growth is key to our success. As governors look for the best strategies to strengthen state economic performance, many are focusing on the potential of small businesses and new firms to transform their economies,” said Gov. Heineman.
“We are always working to advance business innovation and provide support for them to grow,” continued Gov. Heineman. “We want to help the private sector succeed, because they create new job opportunities for our citizens.”
Effective strategies that shape the entrepreneurial environment for high-growth businesses require that governors have the best information on the strengths and challenges of their state’s economic environment and the critical factors that matter most at different stages of job creation.
Successful businesses in all forms—startup firms, scalable enterprises and transformational corporations—depend on many factors, including innovative ideas, access to early stage financing, management capacity, strong networks and the right set of social and economic conditions. In any given environment, some of these factors will be available while others will be lacking. The key challenge for policymakers wishing to promote entrepreneurial activity and job growth is to find which factors are missing and determine how they can be supplied.
In addition to providing policy options to assess the economic environment in states and strategies designed to foster business growth, Growing State Economies will:
- Provide each governor with a state profile on their small business and economic environment;
- Produce action-oriented reports on policy choices that have been shown to generate job growth, entrepreneurial activity and expanded exports; and
- Host four regional summits to provide governors and their senior economic advisors an opportunity to learn from local entrepreneurs, small business owners, researchers and other experts on what works to create high-growth innovative firms.
The Annual Meeting concluded with a closing plenary session. New York Times columnist and Pulitzer Prize winning author Tom Friedman discussed the global challenges facing America today and the role education plays in U.S. competitiveness. The session closed with governors hearing final thoughts on NGA committee reports and considering proposed NGA policies.
The nation’s governors will reconvene in Washington, D.C., February 25-27 for the 2012 NGA Winter Meeting. For more information, visit www.nga.org.
For more information on the 2011-2012 Chair’s Initiative, visit: http://www.subnet.nga.org/ci/1112.
Founded in 1908, the National Governors Association (NGA) is the collective voice of the nation’s governors and one of Washington, D.C.’s, most respected public policy organizations. Its members are the governors of the 50 states, three territories and two commonwealths. NGA provides governors and their senior staff members with services that range from representing states on Capitol Hill and before the Administration on key federal issues to developing and implementing innovative solutions to public policy challenges through the NGA Center for Best Practices. For more information, visit www.nga.org.