Kansas Governor Sam Brownback and Lt. Governor Jeff Colyer, M.D. released their Strategic Economic Development Plan today during a news conference at the Statehouse. Members of their Growth Team joined them for the announcement.
“Last year, we ran on a platform of called the Road Map for Kansas, and you sent us to Topeka to grow the economy, improve education, reform government, and protect the family. A part of that platform, we committed to providing you with an Economic Development Strategic Plan for the whole state. Today Jeff and I are issuing a memorandum to all Kansans is that Plan,” Gov. Brownback said.
Brownback continued, “The ultimate goal of Kansas’ economic development system is the prosperity of the state’s citizens. Our plan lays out our first steps toward greater prosperity. These economic initiatives described in the document begin this process.”
The plan lays out a few fundamental goals:
* Establish a Council of Economic Advisors to begin the processes of better coordinating the actions and resource allocations of seven different economic development-related organizations that tend to operate in an uncoordinated manner—and holding them accountable through rigorous performance metrics. Stan Ahlerich will serve as the council’s executive director.
* Develop a more uniform business tax policy that treats all businesses equally rather than the current set of rules and laws that give great benefit to a few (through heavily bureaucratic programs) and zero benefit to many.
* Change the funding procedure that will allow Kansas’ universities and community colleges to become better engines of economic opportunity.
* Develop a program for improving the economic development potential of rural Kansas.
* Assure that the state’s development of transportation infrastructure generates the best economic development return possible.
“A sound economic development process enhances prosperity through enhanced business-sector productivity; it creates, sustains, and renews economic opportunity for families by creating a vibrant business sector,” Lt. Gov. Colyer said. “These initiatives represent a beginning – not the end – of a long-term transformation process. They create a focus for immediate and specific action.”
Kansans can read the Strategic Economic Development Plan at www.governor.ks.gov.