Audio – Senator Keith Ingram Reporting News From 91st General Assembly
November 23rd, 2018 • News

November 23, 2018

  • Keeping up with government programs can be confusing, especially after legislative auditors recently issued their findings about the CIA.
  • Their research was not about the Central Intelligence Agency and its network of spies. My legislative committee assignments cover a lot of territory, but I‘ve never been mixed up with James Bond type adventures.
  • The CIA that legislative auditors were talking about is the Consolidated Incentives Act, one of the least known but most important laws in Arkansas.
  • The Arkansas version of the CIA bundled into one a number of economic development incentives. Some incentives are based on jobs created, while others depend on the amount of equipment a manufacturing company purchases.
  • Some industries receive incentives in the form of job training, or improvements to water and drainage systems. State officials help other industries by issuing bonds, which lowers the cost of taking out a loan.
  • Legislative auditors recently completed a thorough analysis of the various types of incentives that Arkansas uses to attract new industry and create new jobs.
  • A strong majority of the larger incentive programs have resulted in positive economic benefits. One smaller program has not yet shown positive results.
  • It was created to target specific industries in high-tech fields and in research and development. The incentives are designed to yield economic benefits over the long term, and it may be several more years before legislative auditors have an accurate measure of their effectiveness.
  • The good news is that over the past two decades, Arkansas has increased its investment in economic development. The result is that we now have more industry located in Arkansas, which are creating better paid jobs with more security.
  • In my lifetime Arkansas has made progress in education, health care and economic prosperity. Our children have the opportunity to make even greater progress, and for that I am truly thankful.
  • As we gather this Thanksgiving, I sincerely hope that all of you enjoy a wonderful holiday with your families, and that your homes are filled with love and laughter.
      Click to Listen - Audio Recording from November 23, 2018