For those critics calling for an overhaul of the Indiana Economic Development Corp., I suggest taking a look at the big picture.
In its eight years of existence, the corporation has secured record numbers of job commitments and business investment. In the past two years, agreements have been reached with 470-plus companies that are either expanding or relocating to Indiana. The job prospects for Hoosiers in the last few weeks total more than 4,100 with announcements from ExactTarget, Angie’s List, Land O’ Frost and more.
Although some focus on the few businesses that struggle to get off the ground, one must remember that any incentives offered are not paid unless the jobs materialize. The corporation approach is a low/no-risk proposition for the state and Hoosier taxpayers.
An accomplished, bipartisan board of directors meets publicly each quarter to discuss strategy and results. The governor serves as an active leader, chairing each meeting over the past eight years. The public-private partnership model is transparent and effective. Because of its success, that model has been replicated in other states.
Indiana’s ascension in its economic development climate has been well documented. The performance that has followed is due to strong leadership and a hard-working staff that has our state outproducing its competitors. And when the national economy finally begins a return to normalcy, the state is positioned for even greater success.
We should be proud that our state is one that is getting things done – and the corporation is a major part of that effort. Let’s work together to help it achieve even more in the years ahead.
KEVIN M. BRINEGAR President and CEO Indiana Chamber of Commerce Indianapolis