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Economic Summit

Posted on 22nd November 2013 at 16:42

Regional Economist Scott Bailey with the Employment Security Department says that he wanted to be optimistic at last night’s Cowlitz County Economic Summit, but he says that the numbers just don’t allow him that luxury. Bailey says that he doesn’t see many jobs coming back to Cowlitz County any time soon, and he also says that the conditions are in place for the economy to crater again…economicsummit…Bailey says that one of the main reasons for the job stagnation in Cowlitz County is a measurable drop in population. He also showed charts claiming that virtually all of the benefit from economic improvements since 1975 have gone to the top one percent of wage-earners; he says that overall household incomes are virtually the same as they were in the 70’s, while the disparity with the top earners is measured in orders of magnitude. The news wasn’t all bad at last night’s Summit. Realtor Mike Wallin says that 2014 should shape up as a pretty good year for real estate, while Longview City Manager Bob Gregory says that progress is being made on the SR 432 Rail Realignment and Highway Improvement Project. Lisa Matye Edwards with LCC reports that improvements to the region’s higher education and workplace preparedness are under way, while Ted Sprague with the CEDC reports that he just got back from a trade mission to China. He says that there’s great interest in Cowlitz County, with the possibility of huge investments from overseas.