Right-to-work boosts Indiana business, state booster says
Posted: 06/12/2012 at 3:00 pm
By: Marilyn Odendahl
Daniel J. Hasler, Indiana Secretary of Commerce and chief of IEDC, spoke today, June 12, during the annual luncheon of the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce Economic Development Council. Explaining that a thousand whispers can be heard over a shout, he encouraged the group talk to their business associates and get them to think about Indiana as a place to locate and grow a business.
“Our product as a state is so incredibly strong right now,” he said.
Hasler, who described himself as the “chief bragger,” highlighted a list of surveys ranking Indiana as a top state for doing business. Among the leading reasons for the state’s positive image is its recent adoption of right-to-work legislation.
Of the 150 companies considering Indiana, 47 have said they are doing so because right-to-work was enacted, Hasler said. Of those businesses, 40 are in active negotiations with the state and of those, 13 have accepted incentive offers.
The IEDC leader said having right-to-work legislation makes selling the state easier.
“Is it the end-all, be-all? Absolutely not,” Hasler said of right-to-work. “Does it give us something else to sell? Absolutely.”
Indiana has a lot of selling left to do. The IEDC has set the goals of completing 250 deals in 2012, which includes expansions and consolidations as well as luring new companies to the state. To date, 113 deals have been completed.
Hasler acknowledged the state has a lot of work to meet its goal and he noted softening in the European and Asian markets could weaken the global economy, therefore hindering the IEDC’s progress.
“We’ve got to have some wind at our back from the national economy in order for us to make these numbers,” Hasler said.