(04/09/14) - Making a difference when it comes to the state's economy is the
goal of Michigan's Lieutenant Governor.
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley spent Wednesday morning talking job growth at the Saginaw Chamber.
He says Saginaw is well on its way to economic recovery. He talked about key components that are helping to move Saginaw County and the entire state forward.
Calley says he's looking forward to more job growth in the area. He credits local restaurants and food service companies for helping to fuel the economic comeback here.
"The food production out of our state is huge. Food manufacturing is huge. When you talk about cucumbers, for example. Tart Cherries, more grown in Michigan than anywhere else, or blueberries," he said.
Saginaw area business leaders served on a panel that was moderated by Calley.
Tim Hausbeck owns Hausbeck Pickle, a wholesale provider in Saginaw.
"We've been here since 1923 and primarily our business is serving fast food industries," he said.
They talked about jobs in other sectors, too, including manufacturing, construction and healthcare, and they presented an important message to members of the younger generation who hope to walk in their footsteps one day.
"Leadership transition is so important to a community like ours," said Sam Shaheen, SSP Associates, president.
To continue making progress, Calley says it's extremely important to help unemployed residents.
"What we want to do now is take some of the work that we've done and success that we've had in one level and bring it to the next level so community ventures, helping to structure long term unemployed to find employment. Solve the problems that blocked them from employment before and help them to gain that independence over the long term, in order to scale that up more, we need more participating employers," he said.
Calley says meetings like this one help state leaders to focus on economic issues at the local level.
"When we work on setting priorities for the administration activities, the types of policies that we implement and that we pursue, it's really based on just local knowledge of what the needs are, and so it's critically important that we spend time all over our state talking to the folks that make exciting things happen in our communities and take our cues from them to get a report card," he said.
Some of the younger business leaders say this seminar makes them want to get more involved in their community.
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