September 20, 2014

Governors in Nebraska say federal government is holding states back (AUDIO)

Governors gathered in Nebraska for an economic summit say the federal government is hindering state economic growth.

Gov. Dave Heineman, hosting the summit in Omaha as chairman of the National Governors Association, worries about the tax climate in Washington as well as federal regulations and the federal health care law.

“Those three things are creating uncertainty at the federal level and that’s why you see more cash on the sidelines than ever before,” Heineman says. “I would like to see the federal government provide stability when it comes to taxes, regulation and health care.”

The regional summit in Omaha is designed to exchange ideas about how to grow state economies and create jobs. Joining Heineman at the summit are Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder. All are Republicans who complain that the administration led by President Barack Obama, a Democrat, retards economic growth and has kept the economy from fully emerging from the recession.

Snyder of Michigan added that the politics of Washington gets in the way.

“I believe the dysfunctionality of Washington is holding back our economic recovery in our states,” Snyder says. “And, if that could be resolved, we’d move forward faster.”

Branstad of Iowa says regulations being pushed by the Obama Administration threaten a big economic advantage enjoyed by the Midwest.

“We have an economic advantage, because we have reliable, low-cost energy,” Branstad says. “If that’s taken away from us by the EPA, that’s going to be a real downer for economic growth.”

The summit, part of the initiative promoted by Heineman as NGA chairman called “Growing State Economies”, wraps up today.

The three previous regional summits were held in Connecticut, Washington and Tennessee.

AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]

AUDIO: Gov. Heineman, Gov. Branstad and Gov. Snyder discuss federal obstacles to economic growth [5:20]