Rep. Jim Walsh proposes tax credits to create rural job growth


Legislator: Rep. Jim Walsh
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Two rural Southwest lawmakers have introduced bipartisan legislation that would create tax credits to increase economic development and job growth in rural areas. John Sattgast reports from Olympia.

SATTGAST: Creating new jobs and fostering business growth in struggling rural areas is a top priority for newly elected state Rep. Jim Walsh. The Republican from Aberdeen has partnered up with his Democratic seatmate, Brian Blake, to introduce the Washington Rural Jobs Act. Walsh told a House committee on Wednesday that many business can get started, but they really need help to grow.

WALSH: Getting started they can do, but then getting enough capital to grow to that next stage where they go in to a bigger facility or hire up is where there is a liquidity problem — there's not enough capital. I like that this bill really targets that stage of small business development.

SATTGAST: The bill proposes a mixture of federal resources and state tax credits channeled into specific rural growth financing for small businesses. Walsh says the rural coastal regions of Washington that largely depended on timber harvests for their livelihoods have never fully recovered after the spotted owl shutdowns of the 1980s. He's hoping this bill is a small step to change that.

John Sattgast, Olympia.

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