Governor Bob McDonnell announced the membership of his newly created Rural Jobs Council last week. Delegate Margaret Ransone of Kinsale serves on the Council, which aims to identify impediments to and opportunities for job creation in rural Virginia, recommend strategies to improve K-12 education and the workforce pipeline, produce an economic and infrastructure policy for rural Virginia and to make recommendations to improve the tax and regulatory environment in the Commonwealth.
In January, Governor McDonnell issued Executive Order 57 establishing the Rural Jobs Council and named Lieutenant Governor Bolling, Virginia’s Chief Jobs Creation Officer, as Chair of the Council. Secretary of Commerce and Trade Jim Cheng and Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore will serve as Co-Vice Chairs for the group.
The membership of the Council consists of legislators and leaders in the business, manufacturing, agriculture and healthcare industries.
“I am pleased to announce that these community and industry leaders have agreed to serve Virginia on this newly created Rural Jobs Council,” said the governor. “Virginia’s rural communities are the heart and soul of our Commonwealth and we must do everything we can to bring jobs and opportunity to these regions. I am confident this group will develop thoughtful recommendations and a solid infrastructure plan for rural Virginia.”
Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore said, “Agriculture and forestry have an economic impact in Virginia of $79 billion annually and support over 500,000 jobs in the Commonwealth. It is important that we continue to support these industries and our rural communities. I look forward to working with the Council on important rural development issues.”