ABC 17 Interview on Missouri’s Economy

ABC 17 reports on the recent numbers from the Commerce Department: Missouri ranks 43rd out of all 50 states for growth and the state’s gross domestic product was only up a fraction of percent. I made the story cut, arguing that the state of Missouri is doing economic development all wrong: 

“What we need to look at are broad-based reforms, tax reforms which encourage productivity,” Barnes said. Those reforms would include changes to education, infrastructure and energy. Barnes says the numbers don’t look good for continued, future recovery. 

Missouri’s GDP last year was 0.05 percent, well below the nationwide average of 1.5 percent. Only health care kept up with the rest of the country. 

Barnes says the governor’s administration has misplaced focus. “There’s a difference between a press opportunity and real job growth,” he said. 

Missouri government ought to forget the niche so-called jobs tax credits that have been proven not to actually add jobs to our economy. Instead, we should focus on improved higher education, technical training, new nuclear power development, and an improved Interstate highway system.