Ohio’s difficult economic conditions, coupled with a genuine desire to create more statewide employment opportunities, prompted more than 120 Ohioans to participate in the state’s January 21, 2010 Jobs Forum.
Co-hosted by USDA Rural Development, Farm Services Agency and the Ohio Department of Agriculture, Ohio’s Jobs Forum brought together established and aspiring business owners, banking industry executives, legislative officials, rural community leadership and everyday citizens. The group engaged in a free-flowing, informative dialogue about how to improve the state’s overall economic health. The dialogue lasted more than two hours and touched on job development related topics impacting both agriculture and business interests.
Ideas discussed included developing creative financing options to help small, start-up businesses gain increased access to the critical funding they desperately need. This need was especially emphasized since it was pointed out that small businesses are the driving force for local and nationwide job creation. Additionally, banking representatives spent time explaining the unbalanced expectations they must routinely navigate in the loan approval process.
“Solutions to complex economic situations like we’re facing today won’t happen overnight,” said Rural Development Ohio State Director Tony Logan. “But, getting those with a vital interest in the state’s economic health together in a creative exchange of ideas is an essential part of the solution process.” The Jobs Forum helped build an excellent foundation for generating real change in small town Ohio.
Nurturing and keeping businesses in Ohio emerged as the repeated theme throughout the afternoon’s discussion. Incorporating improved strategies for reducing or removing obstacles, red tape, regulatory requirements and other impediments to business growth and job creation were also frequently discussed topics.
There was a buzz of networking activity immediately after the forum as participants connected to further discuss specific partnering and job growth opportunities.
A participant in Ohio’s Jobs Forum discusses ways to improve employee hiring practices as a way to increase job availability and improve economic conditions for Ohioans. (Seated facing audience – from left) Steven Maurer, Executive Director Farm Services Agency, Robert Boggs, Director Ohio Department of Agriculture and Tony Logan, Rural Development State Director.
To learn more, go to the Rural Development and FSA Job Roundtables Schedule, and the News Release, “USDA to Host Roundtables on Jobs, Economic Growth”