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Turning Innovation Into Enterprise


West Virginia House Holds Third Small Business Session In Beckley

Tim Miley, Speaker, WV House of Delegates

Tim Miley, Speaker, WV House of Delegates

On May 20, the West Virginia House of Delegates took its “listening tour” for small business owners and entrepreneurs to Beckley.  The sessions have been organized by House Speaker Tim Miley (D-Harrison) and the House Committee on Small Business, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development, chaired by Del. Doug Skaff (D-Kanawha).  More than 100 people attended the session at the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center, where lawmakers heard from representatives of agriculture, manufacturing, and tourism enterprises.  Advertising the state’s tourism resources, workforce needs, and transportation were among the issues noted.More than one business owner said product diversification had breathed new life into their business when markets have changed.  Kelli Harrison of Analabs, a scientific testing firm, urged lawmakers to do likewise, saying “Our state needs to continue to diversify and bring in other industries in order for our children to have good jobs and be able to stay here.”

Anne Barth, TechConnect’s executive director, praised the listening tour for highlighting the needs of entrepreneurs.  “The sessions have been a great forum for small businesses to talk about what’s working to help them succeed, and what could be changed for the better,” Barth said.  “I applaud Speaker Miley and these legislators for taking time from their busy schedules to go around the state and to hear directly from small businesses and entrepreneurs.”

Both legislative chambers were represented, as Senator Bob Williams, chairman of the Senate Economic Development Committee, joined House members in the session.

Click to read more about the Beckley session:

The committee is holding the sessions in order to hear from small business owners and to explore possible solutions to address challenges faced by small businesses and entrepreneurs. Additional listening tour sessions will be scheduled in other locations across the state.