Friday, September 28, 2007

Can we exorcise painful history?

A contretemps over the name of a political dinner in Buncombe County is probably more about scoring political points than it is about making amends for the Democratic Party’s white supremacist past. Asheville Republicans calling themselves the Carolina Stompers are urging the Democrats to change the name of the annual Vance-Aycock dinner, named for the late Govs. Charles B. Aycock and Zebulon Vance. Aycock was a leader in the white supremacist movement at the end of the 19th century that overthrew a legally elected black-and-Republican government in Wilmington and reimposed white rule in this state for decades.
The Carolina Stompers are protesting the annual fall dinner because of Aycock’s participation and leadership in that white supremacist movement. Aycock had a lot of help, including from the state’s most prominent newspapers, The News & Observer of Raleigh and The Charlotte Observer. Those newspapers ran extensive reviews of that shabby episode in state politics last year and editorially apologized for their support of the movement.
But would dropping the name of Aycock in any way make up for the wrongs of the 19th century, or even mark the Democratic Party as a more progressive organization? And what would it say about politician’s regard for one of Aycock’s beneficial legacies – that he championed universal education and through his efforts the state began building and operating schools that give African Americans more formal education than previously had been available?
And if Aycock’s name is dropped, what about Vance’s? He was the Civil War governor who harried Confederate President Jefferson Davis to give N.C. more materiel to fight the war. Had Vance succeeded in his mission, slavery would have been prolonged for goodness knows how long. Should his name be dropped, his remains dug up from Asheville’s Riverside Cemetery and his bones spirited out of Buncombe County as a way to atone for his role in the Civil War?
These are the same questions that come up from time to time. There are many people of good will who believe, for example, that Confederate monuments such as Silent Sam on the UNC Chapel Hill campus, should come down, or the name of William Saunders should be chiseled off a campus building because he is thought to have been a key leader of the Ku Klux Klan during the Reconstruction era.
Would removing these physical reminders of the state’s racist past make North Carolina a better place to live? Or would it be easier for all of us to forget the violence of the Civil War, the criminality of the white supremacy movement, the immorality of the on era and the sheer meanness of Jim Crow era? Would forgetting this shameful past be good? Or would it make it easier for opportunists to revive the virulent racism that once marked this state as a place of ignorance and intolerance?
Hard questions. What do you think?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

There's a Mayberry, all right

Associated Press National Writer Allen Breed's story
about Thelma Lou’s decision to move from California to Mount Airy reminded me that folks often say the fictional Mayberry of the “Andy Griffith Show” doesn’t really exist. No place could be so wholesome, so American, so laden with the kinds of values most folks hold dear, at least in spirit if not in reality, the theory goes.
Betty Lynn, the actress who played Barney’s girlfriend Thelma Lou in the sitcom, is not only a new resident of Mount Airy but also an honoree of the 18th annual Mayberry Days this weekend and grand marshal of the Mayberry Days Parade Saturday (Sept. 29).
Mount Airy probably comes pretty close to being Mayberry, what with its Snappy Lunch and Floyd’s Barbership (“Two chairs, no waiting”). And it is Andy Griffith’s hometown, of course, though the actor has lived in Manteo at the eastern end of the state for many years.
Mount Airy sits in the foothills very near where the Blue Ridge Mountains rise up in, as Sam Ervin once said about Table Rock, “indescribable glory.” Yes, they do. And they embrace in their loving grasp the real Mayberry. It’s not in North Carolina. It’s in Virginia, overlooking North Carolina.
If you’ve been down the Blue Ridge Parkway near its crossing into North Carolina, you’ve just about been through Mayberry. It’s a tiny settlement, not even a town. It can’t be more than 15 miles from Griffith’s hometown, but it’s been there for more than a century.
Mayberry Trading Post dates to 1892 and once housed the post office for residents of the region. You can see a picture of it here.
And many families, including ours, still worship from time to time just up the road at Mayberry Presbyterian Church, built by the late mountain preacher Bob Childress in the 1920s. His grandson Stuart Childress preaches there today.
The Mayberry church land was given by a man named Ceph Scott, whose home still stands. It’s currently owned by Dr. Harold Spangler, who says he’s a cousin – “a poor cousin,” he emphasizes – of Charlotte and Chapel Hill businessman C.D. Spangler, one of North Carolina’s wealthiest men.
For more history on the real Mayberry, here’s a link to a 1984 article in The Mountain Laurel.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Did Dems, Repubs cut up the territory?

Did Democrats and Republicans cut up the territory?
A long time ago, gentlemen’s agreements about legislative seats would affect who got elected to the General Assembly. There were stories about deals made where politicians from some districts would take turns serving in Raleigh --- and sometimes the same sort of alternating agreement would affect other races. It’s been so long since there was a governor from the western part of the state (Republican Jim Holshouser of Boone in 1972, unless you count Republican Jim Martin of Iredell in 1984 and ’88) that there probably would be some interest in some sort of east-west rotation.
Those alternating agreements were back in the bad old days of Democratic hegemony, when the Dems controlled politics from the courthouse to the statehouse. In the modern era of divided government, there’s much more competition for elective posts. We’ve had Democrats and Republicans in the governor’s office, the U.S. Senate and the Council of State.
And yet: the most recent history is that Democrats have won most of the governor’s races and Republicans have won most of the Senate races. It is almost as though the two parties divided up the territory and agreed on who would have which posts.
I don’t believe that’s the case and I don’t know of a Republican or a Democrat who’d put any credence in such a notion.
Of the major races (U.S. Senate and N.C. governor since 1970), Democrats have won six of the 9 races for governor and all of the last four gubernatorial contests. That’s 67 percent of the time. Republicans just haven’t mounted a very strong challenge in those races.
But in U.S. Senate races, Republicans have won nine of the last 12 races – including all six of the races for the seat once held by Republican Sen. Jesse Helms, and splitting 3-3 with Democrats for the seat once held by Democratic Sen. Sam Ervin. In the most recent contest, Republican Richard Burr won the seat to put both seats in GOP hands. The GOP has won N.C. Senate races 75 percent of the time.
(And it’s worth mentioning that Democrats have won the presidential race in North Carolina just once since 1970 – Jimmy Carter in 1976. Republicans have won all eight of the other races.
It’s enough to make you wonder: Will 2008 test this trend? In the governor’s race, Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue and State Treasurer Richard Moore are engaged in a lively Democratic primary race while former Supreme Court Associate Justice Bob Orr, state Sen. Fred Smith and Salisbury lawyer Bill Graham are vying in the Republican primary. Conventional wisdom probably calls the race for the Democrats, but Republican Orr has won more statewide races (as a judge) and Smith and Graham both have the money to make it a contest if they're willing to spend it.
In the U.S. Senate race, Democrats appear to be having a hard time coming up with a strong candidate to challenge Republican Sen. Elizabeth Dole for another term.
How do you think it’s going to go? Let me know.

Note: Bob Orr commented on this blog on his own blog. Click here to read.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Barney's 'corner room at the Y'

Corner room at the Y?
Much is being made in Raleigh these days of the opening of the first part of the newly constructed YMCA on Hillsborough Street between the Capitol and the N.C. State University. It’s a marvelous facility from all I’ve heard and read about it, replacing the old Central Y with the new John M. Alexander Family YMCA.
Local businessman Johnny Mac Alexander engineered the replacement project. His father, John McKnitt Alexander, organized the fund-raising campaign to build the old Central Y in the late 1950s.
Among other things, millions of television fans of the Andy Griffith Show know a little about the Central Y. That’s where Mayberry Deputy Barney Fife would stay when he made his trips to Raleigh. He liked “the corner room at the Y,” and for decades folks have been pointing out the corner room at the Y to visitors. Johnny Mac Alexander has a plaque and doorknob from the corner room at the Y (Room 201), reports Matthew Eisley of the News & Observer. Here’s a link.
According to one story I heard long ago, the original corner room at the Y hadn’t been at the Central Y in years and years. Its materials, at least, were in my neighborhood on the north side of Raleigh. Bruce Robertson, who lived around the corner from me for years, was an accomplished woodworker who made his modest two-story colonial home into something of a showplace. He scrounged lumber wherever he could find it and made lovely things from it.
His backyard featured a gazebo, a storybook playhouse for his daughter, a balcony on his house and a new sunroom that was the envy of the neighborhood. I bought an old Sears joiner from him in the late 1970s. He told me how he’d used it to plane down the lumber he recovered from the demolition of an earlier version of the Central Y. He pointed to the gazebo and told me, “That’s ‘the corner room at the Y’ right there.”
I suspect those materials might have been from a corner room that pre-dated the Andy Griffith Show (1960-68) and Barney’s references to his corner-room visits to Raleigh. Bruce moved away from our neighborhood years ago and several owners have come and gone. I don’t know if Bruce’s story was true, or if the timing was way off, or if the current owners realize the little piece of history they might just have behind their house. We walk by it on our evening stroll most every night, and wonder.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

New sites for Navy's OLF?

It’s no secret that the Navy has a new attitude about alternative sites for an outlying landing field for its FA/18 SuperHornet jets so they can practice aircraft carrier landings. And it's a welcome change.
It surprised a lot of folks a few years ago when the Navy announced before a NC task force on the OLF that it wouldn’t consider any new sites. The Navy preferred a site near the Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, where hundreds of thousands of large waterfowl spend their winter and threaten the costly jets and their pilots with the prospect for collisions.
Earlier this year a host of Republican and Democratic officials – From U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Dole and Richard Burr to members of the congressional delegation such as Rep. David Price and the General Assembly – made it clear that the state’s political leadership was largely against the choice of Site C, as it’s called, near the wildlife refuge. Since then, the Navy has sent pretty clear signals that it’s willing to listen to both Virginia and North Carolina about other spots.
Since then the state has quietly gone about the job of finding suitable sites the Navy might consider. Among the criteria: a “dark” spot away from development so that pilots can practice night landings, no significant impact on the environment such as bird-plane collisions, concentrated ownership of the land so it would be easier to assemble enough for the needed 8,000-foot strip and no particular obstructions for pilots. They thought large tracts of forest land might suit the Navy.
Word is that the state identified six tracts – two not far from Jacksonville and four closer to the Virginia-North Carolina border – that it thought the Navy might find more suitable to its needs, although it’s not clear yet what the Navy’s reaction to the six sites is. The governor’s Outlying Landing Field Study Group meets this morning at 11 a.m. to pursue the matter.
Meanwhile, the Commonwealth of Virginia has given the Navy 11 sites to consider as an alternative, according to reports from the Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk. Those sites reportedly have gone up the line to the Secretary of the Navy, who may decide in November to formally add additional sites to the list under consideration.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Gov. Easley's fantasy?

What exactly was Gov. Mike Easley trying to say when he called “fantastic” the legislature’s passage of a bill that could cost $20 million more than a $40 million bill the governor vetoed the week before? Is the governor aware the word means “based on fantasy” and “so extreme as to challenge belief”?
Here’s what he said in a statement shortly after he signed the bill:
“This tool is a fantastic statement by the General Assembly that North Carolina is focused on the future and determined that our citizens will compete and win in the new world economy. This legislation will create cutting edge economic competitiveness in North Carolina, unlike any state in America. It requires huge investments -- each more than $200 million -- by companies that accept the challenge to build world-class facilities here that are the most technologically advanced on the globe. The bill ensures workers’ job security, wages, benefits and advanced training as part of the incentives. It is performance based with clear criteria for earning any incentive.”
No doubt the governor was using the word the same way the gubernator – California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger – often uses it, to connote a superlative – usually a positive one.
But here’s the Merriam Webster entry for “fantastic” from its online website:
1 a : based on fantasy : not real b : conceived or seemingly conceived by unrestrained fancy c : so extreme as to challenge belief : UNBELIEVABLE; broadly : exceedingly large or great 2: marked by extravagant fantasy or extreme individuality : ECCENTRIC 3 fantastic : EXCELLENT, SUPERLATIVE (a fantastic meal)
.... synonyms FANTASTIC, BIZARRE, GROTESQUE mean conceived, made, or carried out without adherence to truth or reality. FANTASTIC may connote unrestrained extravagance in conception or merely ingenuity of decorative invention (dreamed up fantastic rumors to spread). BIZARRE applies to the sensationally queer or strange and implies violence of contrast or incongruity of combination (a bizarre medieval castle built in the heart of a modern city). GROTESQUE may apply to what is conventionally ugly but artistically effective or it may connote ludicrous awkwardness or incongruity often with sinister or tragic overtones (grotesque statues adorn the cathedral) (though grief-stricken, she made a grotesque attempt at a smile). synonym see in addition IMAGINARY

I’m guessing these are not quite what the governor meant. But some folks probably think the legislature’s action really was unbelievable.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Lawmakers express sorrow to Michigan gov, leg.

Politicians are having too much fun with Appalachian State University's win over then-No. 5-ranked Michigan on Sept. 1. Monday night the state Senate approved a joint resolution "expressing sorrow to the Governor of Michigan and the members of the Michigan legislature for the victory of Appalachian State University over the University of Michigan."
The resolution originally included the wording "upset victory" over Michigan but Sen. Dan Clodfelter, D-Mecklenburg, offered an amendment striking the words "upset." It was no fluke victory, he explained; "It was fully expected."
The resolution directs the N.C. Secretary of State to transmit a copy of the resolution of condolence to the Michigan authorities as well as to ASU Coach Jerry Moore and the ASU athletic director.
Usually legislators don't consider other bills during a special session or reconvened session of the legislature called for the sole purpose of considering such things as a veto, but in this case Senate Majority Leader Tony Rand, D-Cumberland, said the Senate was only considering this one bill because of such special circumstances as Appalachian's landmark win.
When Sen. Jean Preston, R-Carteret, asked if the Senate would also consider a resolution commmemorating the victory of the East Carolina University Pirates over the UNC Chapel Hill Tar Heels Saturday night in Greenville, Sen. Rand, a die-hard Tar Heels fan, explained good-naturedly it was simply not possible. The Senate, he said with a smile, was considering "just this one."

Monday, September 10, 2007

Good news about the return of the chestnut

Here’s a note from Doug Gillis of Charlotte, vice president of the Carolinas Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation, with encouraging wrods about the hoped-for return of the chestnut. See also the foundation’s website:
Thank you for your article in the August 26, 2007, Charlotte Observer about the Hemlock and the wooly adelgid infestation that is devastating the tree. Thank you also for your comments about the American chestnut and the devastation it has suffered due to the introduced chestnut blight, which resulted in the removal of billons of trees from the environment. There is great hope that the strains of blight resistant, hybrid American chestnut trees being developed by the American Chestnut Foundation and its State Chapters will result in the chestnut returning as a dominant, self sustaining tree in the eastern forests.

The American chestnut tree, though thought by some people to be extinct, continues to sprout from the stumps and root systems of parent trees that are long gone. Relatively large, flowering, native American chestnut trees, which have sprouted from the root collars or root systems of blighted trees, have reached reproductive size and will produce viable nuts if pollen from another chestnut tree is present. A flowering 10-inch diameter American chestnut tree at Pilot Mountain State Park and an 8-inch diameter flowering tree at Crowders Mountain State Park are two examples of such trees. Larger survivor trees exist, and examples are those growing on Wayah Bald west of Franklin, NC. One survivor tree is 16 inches in diameter.

When American chestnut trees are of a size that they flower and they are accessible, they can be back cross-pollinated to hybrid chestnuts by State Chapters and its growers, using pollen from the American Chestnut Foundation’s Research Farms. Some flowering American chestnut trees are used by the Foundation as sources of pollen to cross with hybrid chestnut trees growing at its Research Farms. The hand pollinating done by the American Chestnut Foundation and its State Chapters (stretching from Vermont and New Hampshire to Alabama) helps create genetically diverse, blight resistant trees. Each generation is tested for resistance to the chestnut blight and for strong American chestnut characteristics, with the best trees selected for further crossing. The end product are trees that are 94% American chestnut and 6% Chinese chestnut, which display strong American chestnut characteristics and which demonstrate resistance to the chestnut blight. These trees are intercrossed to reinforce the desired characteristics and to develop trees for use in seed orchards.

Nuts developed in seed orchards are sprouted, and seedlings tested for how well they grow in the forest. Such testing is being conducted at the Bent Creek Experimental Forest adjacent to the North Carolina Arboretum.

You should find the above information about the efforts of the American Chestnut Foundation to restore the American chestnut tree heartening. The story of the American chestnut tree, its demise and its potential recovery (with the help of science and many dedicated people) captures the imagination of most who hear that restoration of the “King of the Forest” is possible.

The Carolinas Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation would welcome an article in the Charlotte Observer about this fascinating story to further the interest of people in restoring a tree that needs the help of mankind, stewards of the environment, to recover.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Farm Report: Wild dog in the hills

We’d see her lurking in the woods, hanging behind the rhododendrons and mountain laurel that dot the hillsides of Belcher Mountain up in the Blue Ridge.
Her flanks were thin, hip bones and ribs standing in relief of her short coat.
Her neck was a mess, a big raw weeping wound on one side, badly swollen on the other. Blood matted her chest.
When we made a move in her direction, she’d fade further into the woods, but something made her keep hanging around.
Our neighbor down the road, Eugene Tinker of Charlotte, first spotted her earlier this summer with another dog. Foxhounds, he thought. He put out food for the pair whenever he was up in the hills.
The county dogcatcher came by and put out traps; the mate was captured and taken away weeks ago.
But this one was too skittish to catch. She avoided the cage with the trap door the dogcatcher put under a tree. She wouldn’t go near the food left inside as bait.
But she would reappear out of the shadows when we walked away. And she’d warily approach the bowls of chow and water we’d leave for her in the woods.
She’d creep up on the pan, hunched down and tensed, ready to run as if she were suspecting a trap. She’d grab a morsel, then run away to eat it, then creep back for another bite.
It was a sad sight. We wondered if she’d been abused, and if she’d ever trust a human.
We’re still not sure. But after several weekends of leaving food for her and speaking to her in calm voice, she has begun to tolerate our presence. She’ll walk with us down to the fields, trailing just a step or so as long as we aren’t looking at her.
I’ve learned to carry some dog biscuits. She won’t take if from my hand if I’m looking her way, but as we walk down the hill she’ll bump the hand with the biscuit and I’ll drop it right there for her to pounce on.
She’s put on a little weight. Her wound is healing and looks clean now. She seems to watch for us and tag along, keeping her distance but clearly interested in our company.
I hopped on the tractor the other day to head down the road to mow some of the late-summer hay. She raced along on a parallel track maybe 10 yards into the woods, laying her ears back and jumping deadfalls like a greyhound and just streaking along with a exuberant joy that made me wish I felt that good.
It was an inspiring sight. This broken dog, afraid and suspicious and distrustful, had found her stride. She bounded through the woods as though it was her favorite thing in all the world, as if these woods were hers.
I don’t think she’ll ever be a pet, certainly not an inside dog. But in time and if the bears and coyotes don’t get her, I think she might be a regular friend for us.
We’ll watch for her as often as we can and make sure she’s got something to eat, but we don’t want to capture her, don’t want to put her on a leash or cart her off in a cage.
She’s a free dog, and we hope to help her stay that way.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Rauch family got a kick out of Michigan game

Former state Sen. Marshall Rauch of Gastonia has an athletic family. He came South after serving in World War II to play basketball at Duke University.
A daughter, Stephanie, was a professional tennis player for a while and is an accomplished golfer.
And his grandson Julian Rauch deflated the hopes of 100,000 or so University of Michigan fans the other day when he kicked the field goal that put his Appalachian State Mountaineers ahead 34-32 in Ann Arbor to knock off the then-No. 5-ranked Wolverines.
The whole family was there except for Stephanie, reports Rauch, and she regrets cancelling plans to go. "To be honest, we were just hoping that Appalachian State would go and give a creditable performance," Rauch says.
At one time in the 1990s, Sen. Rauch was considering running for governor. For years he was a Senate power and chairman of the Senate Finance Committee as well as the Legislative Ethics Committee. Now he brags about his grandchildren. He says the late Hargrove "Skipper" Bowles once told him, "Them that can brag without lying can keep talking," so Marshall Rauch keeps talking.
Julian Rauch, a senior and communications major, had three field goal attempts and made two. One hit the crossbar, another went over "and the important one was the last one with 26 seconds left" that won the game, Marshall Rauch said. He asked Julian if he was nervous. Julian said, "Everyday I dream of being in that situation."
Former state Sen. Zeb Alley, a longtime legislative lobbyist from Waynesville who served in the Senate with Marshall Rauch, didn't go to the game but watched it and later talked with Rauch. Alley said Marshall Rauch, now 84, was “proud as punch.”
Well, who wouldn’t be? It’s an amazing thing to beat Michigan in Michigan Stadium, which seats about six times as many people as Kidd Brewer Stadium in Boone and more than twice as many as Kenan Stadium in Chapel Hill.
On Oct. 1, 1966, the Tar Heels flew up to Ann Arbor and stunned Michigan 21-7 in an upset predicted by then-UNC Chancellor Carlyle Sitterson on the team bus as it left Chapel Hill for the airport.
I was a Carolina cheerleader that year and no one expected the Tar Heels to play even with the Wolverines, let along knock them about on their own field. I had never seen that many people before in one place (the crowd was only about 88,000 or so that day, the biggest crowd all year) and it was loud most of the game – but it got pretty quiet in the fourth quarter after the Tar Heels sewed it up.
I imagine it was pretty much the same Saturday when Julian Rauch kicked the Wolverines around.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

State has paid to keep jobs since '04

It's no secret North Carolina has offered financial incentives of various kinds to companies considering moving here and to existing companies to create new jobs. But I didn’t realize until the other day that since 2004, the state used various kinds of incentives not to recruit or encourage new jobs, but simply to keep the jobs we’ve got. The issue came up when Gov. Mike Easley vetoed a bill that would provide up to $40 million in cash grants to Goodyear Tire & Rubber in Fayetteville if the company invests $200 million in new equipment and meets certain other conditions. That would be a significant step in North Carolina’s economic development policy, but state officials say it would NOT be the first time incentives have been used this way.
Bill Holmes, spokesman for Speaker Joe Hackney, passed along this note from the House’s tax counsel, Caanan Huie:
* This is not the first time economic development incentives have been authorized for retaining jobs. In 2004, the General Assembly codified some of the requirements relating to the One North Carolina Fund. That legislation specifically allows for those funds to be used to encourage job maintenance (as well as the creation of new jobs). (The Fund wasfirst created in 1993 as the Industrial Recruitment Competitiveness Fund, but was limited only by uncodified language that appeared in the budget bills for the next ten years.) The administration felt is was important that they have the flexibility to use those funds to incentivize job maintenance as well as job creation. In addition, some of our tax credits are for items other than creating jobs (i.e. investing in machinery and equipment, exporting cigarettes, producingfilm and TV programs) and have no requirements related to job creation or maintenance.
I also asked Kathy Neal, assistant commerce secretary for communications about these incentives. Here’s part of what she said:
Yes, North Carolina has used incentives to retain jobs and to keep companies from leaving NC.
As you know, JDIGs (Job Development Investment Grants) require job creation. You may not be aware that when the state provides a JDIG grant, in most cases we require that the company maintain existing jobs, as well.
One NC (the One North Carolina fund) is somewhat more flexible. 143B-437.71 (b) states that, “Moneys in the One North Carolina Fund may be allocated only to local governments for use in connection with securing commitments for the recruitment, expansion, or retention of new and existing businesses. …”
Nearly all One NC grants include job creation as well as investment, but a few have focused on retention of jobs.
One example is Philip Morris. A $1 million One NC grant to PM was announced in October 2004, with a goal of helping the company retain jobs at its North Carolina facility in Cabarrus County. The company this year announced it was closing the Cabarrus County plant and moving jobs to Richmond starting in 2008; North Carolina subsequently recovered the $750,000 that had been disbursed to the company.
As for assisting existing industry, it’s important to note that:
· Of the 60 JDIGs awarded since the program began in 2003, 25, or 42 percent, have gone to new companies, and 35, or 58 percent, have gone to existing companies.
· Out of the funds available to JDIG, 70% is going to existing companies.
· Of the 251 One North Carolina grants awarded since 2001, 145, or 58 percent, have gone to new companies; 105, or 42%, have gone to existing companies.
Our overall philosophy about incentives is that, 1) They’re performance-based; and 2) by and large, if a company creates new revenues in the state, those new revenues are typically the source of the incentive, e.g., under JDIG, companies receive a percentage of the withholding tax from the NEW jobs created.
Last but not least: Commerce also has a wide variety of other, non-incentive programs designed to help existing industries/businesses succeed, such as incumbent worker training (in partnership with the Community College System), export assistance, business consulting services and marketing support for travel-related businesses.