Lt. Gov. Bolling to chair newly created Rural Jobs Council

Continuing his years-long work of advancing jobs for Virginians, Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling has been appointed by Governor Bob McDonnell as the chairman of the newly created Rural Jobs Council. The Governor’s announcement noted that the Council will build upon the success of the Governor’s Commission on Job Creation and Economic Development, and continue the Administration’s focus on Virginia’s rural communities.

Lieutenant Governor Bolling commented on the appointment, noting, “I am honored to serve as Chair of the Governor’s Rural Jobs Council. For the past three years, Governor McDonnell and I have shown our commitment to economic development, especially in rural Virginia, and this Council will continue that focus. This group will give Virginia the chance to expand Governor McDonnell’s recent initiatives in the areas of entrepreneurship and education reform to ensure that all Virginians have the same opportunities, no matter their zip code.”

Here is the Governor’s press release and the names of those who have been appointed to the Council:

On Wednesday, January 2, 2013, Governor McDonnell issued Executive Order 57 establishing the Rural Jobs Council. He has 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. The group will make recommendations to address the challenges to economic growth in rural Virginia and develop a statewide rural infrastructure plan to include transportation, education, and community development.

Speaking about today’s announcement, Governor McDonnell said, “I am pleased to announce that these community and industry leaders have agreed to serve Virginia on this newly created Rural Jobs Council. 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, “I am pleased to see Governor McDonnell continue his support of rural Virginia, especially through his continued commitment in making agriculture and forestry key components of his economic development and jobs creation strategies. 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.”

Secretary of Commerce and Trade Jim Cheng commented, “We have seen much success in Virginia, lowering our overall unemployment rate to 5.5%, well below the region and the national average, but we still have a long way to go. Too many areas of the Commonwealth still have stubbornly high unemployment rates. This council will be tasked with building upon the success of the last three years and identifying ways to continue to bring economic growth to all of Virginia’s regions.”

Members of the Governor’s Rural Jobs Council are:

· Shannon Blevins, Director of Economic Development, UVA at Wise, Wise County
· David Brash, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Rural Strategy, Wellmont Health System, Lebanon
· Delegate Kathy Byron, Lynchburg
· Elizabeth Crowther, President, Rappahannock Community College, Saluda
· Katie Frazier, President, Virginia Agribusiness Council, Richmond
· Timothy Heydon, CEO, Shenandoah Growers, Harrisonburg
· Rebecca Hough, Co-Founder and CEO, Evatran, Wytheville
· Thomas Hudson, President, Virginia Coal Association, Richmond
· Delegate Danny Marshall, Danville
· Ned Massee, Chairman, Virginia Chamber of Commerce, Richmond
· Delegate Don Merricks, Martinsville
· Martha Moore, Vice President for Government Affairs, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, Richmond
· Delegate Israel O’Quinn, Abingdon
· Bill Parr, Parr Properties, Cape Charles
· Senator Phil Puckett, Tazewell
· Delegate Margaret Ransone, Kinsale
· Nicole Riley, State Director, National Federation of Independent Business, Richmond
· Senator Frank Ruff, Clarksville
· Brett Vassey, President and CEO, Virginia Manufacturers Association, Richmond
· William Wampler, Executive Director, New College Institute, Martinsville
· Delegate Onzlee Ware, Roanoke.

Responsibilities of the Governor’s Rural Jobs Council are:

· Identify impediments to and opportunities for job creation in Rural Virginia
· Recommend strategies to improve K-12 education and the workforce pipeline
· Produce a comprehensive and meaningful Economic and Infrastructure Policy for Rural Virginia
· Make recommendations to improve the tax and regulatory environment in the Commonwealth.

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  • pinecone321

    Yeah sure. I can’t wait until my rural community is dotted with wind turbines, and solar panel manufacturers. Then when the state and federal government subsidies run dry, they will look an awful lot like Solyndra won’t they? I highly suspect that the most of the companies that were brought to Virginia by Bolling were either outright green companies, or green supporting companies.

    • Lynn R. Mitchell

      Care to put some facts behind those comments?

    • Nope.

    • Pinecone.. BS. Back it up or walk it back.

      • pinecone321

        I don’t have to walk back anything. From Bill Bolling’s site-

        I was thrilled with the McDonnell campaign promise to get oil and gas drilling going off Virginias coast. Obama killed any of those possibilities. Obama also promised that he would bankrupt the coal industry, and he is successfully accomplishing that. The billions of dollars that were spent on developing clean coal technology was doomed with the Obama EPA, who has made it close to impossible to meet their standards, which increase as every lower standard is met. Last I checked, the Dominion Cypress Creek Power Station was likely dead on arrival from the greenies.

        I have no problem with natural gas, none at all. For vehicle purposes, it is still considered an alternative fuel, as most vehicles owned in the Obama and the environmentalists do though. From my understanding the majority of our natural gas extraction is coming from a small area of privately owned lands in ND (Bakken) that are on a boom, only because that extraction is happening on private property. If the state wants to go to conversion of state owned vehicles to natural gas vehicles, wouldn’t it be wise to wait until it is widely and readily available? No more cash for clunkers programs please, in order to persuade purchasers to the Chevy Volt, or any other failed battery operated vehicle.

        Read Bollings position linked above. Look at how much of that article is devoted to the push for green energy. Sure, he promotes traditional energy sources, but sure doesn’t waste to many words on those sources.

        Bolling has been a major supporter of the JMU project for training university students into an effort to promote green energy. They were given an $80,000. grant to study alternative energy initiatives. Bill Bolling has been a major supporter of Apex Wind Energy. Just google it and you will find many articles showing his adamant support of their efforts.

        To the best of my knowledge, there are NO wind energy efforts in the country which have proven a reliable or cost effective source of energy. Every single effort must be backed up by a more reliable “dirty” energy source such as coal powered plants. It is still unreliable and the source cannot be stored.

        No, I don’t have to walk back anything. Between Bolling and McDonnell, they want to be the “energy capitol of the nation.” Too bad that most of those green energy companies Obama has backed and pushed have gone bust. And that was after many many taxpayer dollars being “invested” in those companies. Do we have to follow his pattern here in VA.? No. If wind energy were such a proven source, reliable, and affordable to the consumers, someone in the private sector would be a very very wealth person today.

  • EricMcGrane

    How will Bolling find the time to work on the jobs council in between all his backstabbing the GOP in the media, calling for expansion of medicare, and jetting off to meet with progressives in DC? His schedule is already pretty full.

  • Pwconservative

    For years Bill Bolling was a stalwart and advocate for conservative values, then altruistically for the good of the 09 ticket steps aside to present a unified front; this man has essentialy dedicated his entire life to public service. And now you people call him a back stabber. This is inexcusable and completely deplorable, just like Cohen going around starting rumors about all of the LG candidates this cycle. No wonder we have trouble recruiting new blood into the fold, and no wonder we get raked across the coals every election. This party has become the party of hate and negativity. The more unfortunate part about it is that I see no light at the end of the tunnel. Especially when the so called activists who seek to throw out the establishment because of their negativity and exclusion, are essentially more negative and hateful than those they wish to dispose of.

    • EricMcGrane


      I think you misspelled “political expediency over principle”. I don’t play “it’s my turn” games, and you should expect more from the people you pay to represent you.

      You’re part of the problem, congrats.

      A large part.

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