Governor cites 71,500 new jobs in six months

By Sunni Blevins - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – More than 70,000; that's how many new jobs Governor Bob McDonnell says have been created during his first six months on the job. The administration says this news is good--but their work is far from over.

To be exact, 71,500 jobs have been created in Virginia since February. That's the third highest amount in the nation.

The McDonnell administration cites low taxes, limited regulations, and strong right to work laws as just a few of the reasons job creation is looking up. The 71,500 new jobs represent both the public and private sector. They include full time, part-time, and temporary work--so stimulus dollars and the census certainly factor in here, but the governor believes the bulk of the private sector jobs are here to stay--and there's more to come.

"We've got several major projects and deals in the pipeline with several major employers, and we hope to have more of those here in the near future," said McDonnell. "We've got the opportunity now to open up trade offices in India, China and the United Kingdom."

Lt. Governor Bill Bolling serves as Virginia's first Chief Jobs Creation Officer. He says the job numbers provide hard evidence things are getting better.

"I think it shows that we are making the right decisions in Virginia, we are doing the right things in Virginia to help position our state to take full advantage of a future economic recovery," said Bolling.

State leaders say this job creation news is great--but it's just the first step in the right direction on a journey that's far from over. The administration cited Congressman Cantor's job fair from earlier this week as an example. Thousands of people came out looking for work.

"We are being very aggressive in our economic development and job creation efforts, certainly we are traveling across the country and in some cases around the world to bring new business, industry, and jobs to Virginia, but we are also working with existing businesses to help them grow," said Bolling.

State leaders say another major priority right now is workforce training so when they bring jobs into Virginia, they can put the right people with the right skill set into them.

Copyright 2010 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.