By Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio
Jefferson City, Mo. – Missouri lawmakers are being urged to provide moral support, as well as funding, to the state's small business interests during the upcoming legislative session.
Mary Davis is President and CEO of Missouri Enterprise, a non-profit group that advocates for small business interests. She asked a House committee Wednesday to publicly commit to supporting the state's small and mid-level manufacturers and to enact legislation friendly to the industry.
"Manufacturing is critical to economic recovery, and along with only agriculture and mining, manufacturing creates wealth, instead of just moving it around," Davis said.
Charles Schlottach (R, Owensville) chairs the House Appropriations Committee for Economic Development. He expressed support, but also reminded the audience of the state's economic predicament.
"I think you'd probably have to be living in a tunnel or in a cave to not know that the anticipated revenue is not what we thought it was when we left (Jefferson City) last year," Schlottach said.
Lawmakers have been taking testimony this week on a wide range of state programs, in preparation for crafting the state's budget for the next fiscal year.
The 2010 legislative session begins next month.