The Norman Transcript

Columns

November 26, 2012

Being business friendly

NORMAN — Oklahoma is a healthy state for business. We have consistently met trials and challenges and overcome. Entrepreneurship is in our DNA. We’ve come out of every obstacle stronger and more resilient, building a state that is a destination for businesses and families.

Just as it was prior to statehood, many now look to Oklahoma as the land of opportunity. The goal of public officials should continue to be to make Oklahoma an entrepreneurial heaven on earth.

As Oklahoma’s lieutenant governor and small business advocate, I have traveled the state and nation focusing on job retention and job recruitment. Oklahoma has so much to offer. Yet even with our knowledge, skill and opportunity to be competitive in economic development, there are still challenges we must address.

In working to overcome these obstacles, I hosted a series of Small Business & Small Manufacturer Regional Summits, partnering with the state chamber and the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance.

A total of six regional summits, each unique and beneficial, were in various communities across the state: Enid, Tulsa, Durant, Lawton, Bartlesville and Oklahoma City. Each summit included discussions that identified key issues that impact manufacturers and businesses in general.

These discussions were then followed by a solution-orientated dialogue on issues such as work force development, health care, workers’ compensation reform and specific regional items. The ideas and solutions offered at these summits will result in a legislative agenda that will be included in my 2013 Policy Report.

These summits were an instrumental, constructive next step to my previous travels and town halls across the state, providing opportunities to visit directly with Oklahoma’s businesses and manufacturers. Their thoughts and ideas for improvement were invaluable because they work on a daily basis to grow business and move Oklahoma forward.

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