A business group calling itself the first to promote technology-focused economic development in Ohio threw its support Monday to Gov. Bob Taft's Third Frontier program.
Michael Petrecca, managing partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers' Columbus office and chairman of the 2-year-old E3 Ohio, hailed the governor's 10-year, $1.6 billion program as "an investment in Ohio's third century."
Third Frontier calls for grant and loan programs for selected emerging technologies as well as sponsoring the development of technologies with commercial potential. About two-thirds of its funding hinges on legislative and voter approvals.
"Unless we proactively invest in Ohio's economic future now, we will find ourselves lagging behind other states in business creation, higher per capita income and overall quality of life," said Charles Walsh, an E3 Ohio member and general partner of The Entrepreneurs Fund, a private investment fund in Dayton.
"I can tell you firsthand how important it is for investment capital to be put to work in creating and growing strong, vibrant, long-term Ohio businesses, and not on the East or West Coast," Walsh added.
- James McNair
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