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Ideas to help boost the economy

State Rep. Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe), speaker of the House, and Rep. Candy Spence Ezzell (R-Roswell) meet Wednesday afternoon with area community leaders on the Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell campus to discuss how legislators could help create more jobs and spur the economy in Chaves County. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

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The visit locally is part of a statewide “job creation listening tour” prior to the start of the legislative session in January.

“We are very sincere and earnest about taking great ideas, regardless of the party, taking them back to Santa Fe and putting them into law,” said Egolf. “Obviously there is still a lot more left to be done.”

Local business and government representatives talked about making it easier for start-ups and small businesses to obtain funding, improving conditions for younger professionals, addressing the growing crisis of women with children who are addicted to drugs, easing regulatory demands on businesses, increasing funding for law enforcement and crime prevention, investing in early literacy, and funding improvements at the Roswell International Air Center and helping it to establish an independent air authority.

Egolf said that some of the actions that resulted from last year’s tours included investments in the air center, helping companies install broadband in the state and making it easier for local, smaller companies to obtain funding from the Local Economic Development Act and a state job incentives program.

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Lisa Dunlap is a general assignment reporter for the Roswell Daily Record.