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Barrett Unveils Vision for New Jobs Office

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As part of his comprehensive plan to create jobs and get Wisconsin working, Tom Barrett has called for the state's job creation and economic development tools to be streamlined, improved and consolidated directly in the governor's office. In remarks today at the Wisconsin Way's Economic Summit: Moving Wisconsin Forward, Tom described his bold reforms that will make state government a stronger partner with the private sector to create jobs and expand business opportunity:

Right now, the state's job creation tools are spread across state government -- 150 programs in 25 different agencies and departments. It needs more focus, and we must do better. As governor, I will combine oversight of all job creation efforts in a Jobs Office directly in the governor's office with a clear plan and purpose -- to create jobs and get Wisconsin working.

The Jobs Office Director will be responsible for implementing Tom's 67-page jobs plan , including signature proposals like offering tax cuts and incentives for businesses that create jobs, streamlining the Department of Commerce, and creating a Venture Capital Fund to help entrepreneurs get the capital they need to launch new business enterprises.

Tom also discussed the type of person he would nominate to run the new Jobs Office, and he pledged to launch an exhaustive search the day after the election to recruit the best leadership to Wisconsin. Tom's Jobs Office Director will be selected by Inauguration Day so that he or she can get to work on day one to implement Tom's comprehensive plan to create jobs for workers and families across our state:

If the people of Wisconsin choose me as their next governor on Nov. 2, we will launch a comprehensive search on Nov. 3 to immediately identify a director of my new Governor's Jobs Office. And it won't take nine long months to identify the right candidate -- my Jobs Office Director will be named, hired and in place ready to spring into action by January 3, 2011 -- Inauguration Day.

Tom specified the qualities and characteristics he will look for in the Jobs Office Director:

* Share the proactive and aggressive vision Tom has proposed for Wisconsin.
* Understand the diversity and interconnectedness of Wisconsin's economy -- including manufacturing, agriculture, tourism and technology, to name a few.
* Work just as easily with businesses groups like Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce as with unions like the Steelworkers. The new Jobs Office Director will be just as knowledgeable about working with small business owners on main street across Wisconsin as with the emerging industries of tomorrow like high-tech, biotech.

It's a model Tom has employed in the past with success. As mayor, Tom laid out three core principles in 2007 when the city was searching for a new chief to lead the Milwaukee Police Department: a chief who had a proactive and aggressive crimefighting vision; a leader who could earn the respect of the rank and file police officers, and a leader who understood the diversity of the community. Tom used those principles in an exhaustive search, and identified Ed Flynn. Working in tandem with Chief Flynn's expertise and strategy, violent crime in Milwaukee has decreased by 20% over the past two years.

This is the approach Tom will take to identify the quarterback of Wisconsin's efforts to create jobs -- directly in the governor's office. And unlike Scott Walker's 68-page joke, it will create jobs and get Wisconsin working -- on the very first day of the Barrett Administration.

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