Washington has a dynamic, entrepreneurial economy where companies grow, individuals succeed, and communities reap the rewards of growing incomes and shared prosperity. Washington will become the center for growth in industries that will drive the emerging global economy. We will also maximize the competitiveness of our existing industries by creating the most productive workforce and applying the most advanced technologies available. All of Washington’s communities must share in the prosperity that will replace the current economic recession.
The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in Washington. With the greatest rate in the nation of new company creation, Washington is the testing ground for new technologies and products. This entrepreneurial energy is fed by a world-renowned community of researchers and technology professionals. Washington has the 6th highest level of per capita spending on research and development, most of that occurring in the private sector. Washington’s universities attract over $300 million of federal research funds every year and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory provides a significant research resource in the Tri-cities and across the state. This research capacity is the infrastructure on which the technology economy is built.
But our entrepreneurial environment is only one aspect of Washington’s potential for economic vitality. Washington consistently ranks among the top 5 states in the Corporation for Enterprise Development’s Economic Development Report Card. Our major strengths are in development capacity, with high marks for educational attainment, infrastructure, amenities and natural capital, and innovation assets. » Read more about Governor Locke’s Major Job and Economic Vitality Accomplishments
We must encourage the industries of the future to grow and develop in Washington State. Using tools such as specialized facilities and incubators, matching research funds, specialized education and workforce program, tax preferences and strategic recruitment and marketing, we will make Washington synonymous with the industries of the future such as clean energy, biotechnology, wireless telecommunications, and value added agriculture.
This future will be built on a solid foundation of energy, water, telecommunications, and transportation resources that these businesses must have to survive. We will create a business environment that reduces the burden and uncertainty in taxation and regulation and offers help to new companies struggling to grow and prosper.
Finally, we will safeguard our future by building a solid financial foundation for Washington and protecting the natural assets that make Washington a great place to live, work, and raise a family.