I recently had the privilege of accompanying Secretary Vilsack at one of a series of White House Business Roundtables in Portland, Oregon. There, I met a diverse group of men and women representing a variety of business interests including food production, building construction, banking, equipment manufacturing, and renewable energy. As part of the discussion, Secretary Vilsack shared the framework for the American Jobs Act – employing people now, building a platform for sustainable growth, and getting our fiscal house in order.
The American Jobs Act will create over 5,600 jobs in Oregon, helping to jumpstart the local economy and putting Oregonians, some of whom have been unemployed for long time, back to work. We heard ideas from business leaders at the roundtable — ideas about how to make businesses more successful and how to create and sustain jobs in Oregon. The ideas I heard were as diverse as the businesses represented: creating more recreation opportunities, developing biomass centers, maintaining access to public lands, and improving technology, particularly in rural communities. The reality is there are many options for us to explore.
The American Jobs act puts into place principles that Oregonians have known for a long time — we need an economy that makes, innovates, and exports. And to do this, our leaders in Washington must come together to hammer out a solution that benefits everyone. When they do, we’ll support job growth and build a stronger future for all Americans.