Governor Greg Abbot recently released a report to the people of Texas, and there is good news. More than 300,000 jobs were created in Texas in 2017. And the keeps coming.
We led the nation in job growth again in February of this year, adding 40,000 jobs according to the Texas Workforce Commission. New York and Florida were a distant second and third. Further, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas projected a statewide job growth rate of 3.4 percent for the year, up from 2.1 percent last year, driven largely by recovery in the energy sector.
We are the top exporting state by far. Our exports of $264 billion last year surpassed California by more than 50 percent. Think about this. Texas economy is now the 10th largest in the world, and we’ve had 92 consecutive months. That’s seven and a half years of job growth.
So, how do we continue this run of success? The Texas 2050 Coalition of major business, economic, development, and Chambers of Commerce has been working closely with state leaders like the Select Committee on Economic Competitiveness keep our eye on the long-term.
The committee released their report recently, and it had a primary theme. With global economic leadership at stake, education and workforce development are more critical than ever. We must stress innovation and education for our Texas students across multiple disciplines.
Other topics included in the report that deserve emphasis include supporting our small businesses and entrepreneurs, smart cities, and incentives to compete. Since we’re also number one in population growth, we’ll need more infrastructure like roads but also broadband technology.
Any action by Congress will likely require corresponding action by the Texas Legislature in 2019.
Finally, Austin, Dallas, and other cities still anxiously await the decision by Amazon on HQ2, their second North American headquarters. While odds makers initially had Austin and Dallas in the top five, the competition just got tougher. The state of Maryland has offered Amazon $6.5 billion in tax incentives and $2 billion in transit improvements. That may be hard to beat.
For more on the committee’s findings and our other policy news, find me online at Quorum Public Affairs.
Sponsored in part by:
Craig Casselberry is founder and president of Quorum Public Affairs, Inc. and a 20-year veteran of Texas politics. As president of Quorum Public Affairs, Casselberry has managed more than 100 strategic communications projects, issue coalitions, and federal, state and local public policy campaigns for corporate clients of all sizes. You can learn more about Craig HERE.