Valley federal delegation announces working group

May 20, 2015
The Valley’s three Congressional representatives and Ohio’s two U.S. senators have agreed to work together along with the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber in an effort to identify and advance the community’s legislative priorities on the federal level.
The Valley’s three Congressional representatives and Ohio’s two U.S. senators have agreed to work together along with the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber in an effort to identify and advance the community’s legislative priorities on the federal level.

The Valley Federal Delegation Working Group consists of U.S. Reps. Tim Ryan, D-Howland, Bill Johnson, R-Marietta, whose district extends into southern Mahoning County, and David Joyce, R-Mentor, whose district extends into northern Trumbull County, and U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Rob Portman, R-Ohio.                         

“Increasing engagement and communication between the business community and the federal delegation will help advance the Valley’s economic well being,” said Regional Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs Guy Coviello. “The Chamber is happy to be a part of this process, and the bi-partisan cooperation among the working group is encouraging.”

The Regional Chamber is the lead economic development agency for Trumbull and Mahoning counties. In addition to having more than $1 billion in projects expected to be announced over the next two years, the Chamber is leading local initiatives such as the Eastern Ohio Military Affairs Commission, the Route 422 Corridor redevelopment project, the 10-county OH-PA Stateline Export Initiative, and a partnership with northeast Ohio farm bureaus that impacts more than 7,000 farms. The Chamber recently partnered with Youngstown State University to host Cuban diplomats in advance of historic negotiations between President Obama and Republic of Cuba President Raul Castro.

“I’m pleased to join these efforts to help Mahoning Valley families,” Portman stated. “By working together on important issues such as workforce training, boosting Youngstown manufacturers, and ensuring that our military bases like the Youngstown-Warren Air Reserve Station are receiving the funding they need, we will help to create long-term economic growth and jobs in our region.”

Among the issues identified as Valley priorities are increased workforce development, advancement at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station and increasing export opportunities for local industries.

“I am pleased to join my colleagues at the federal level to identify areas of common ground to help local businesses grow and expand economic opportunities for our collective future,” said Congressman Tim Ryan.

“There are many issues we can agree on and I am excited about the possibilities that this collaboration by the Regional Chamber can bring to the Mahoning Valley and our Tech Belt region,” Ryan added. “While we have experienced a resurgence of innovation and branding, especially in additive and advanced manufacturing, we need to continue to look at all opportunities for growth.”

Earlier this year, the Regional Chamber announced the formation of the Valley State Delegation Working Group. State Reps. Sean O’Brien, D-Bazetta, Michael O’Brien, D-Warren, Ron Gerberry, D-Austintown, and Michele Lepore-Hagan, D-Youngstown, agreed to work together with the Chamber on the Valley’s legislative priorities on the state level. State Sens. Capri Cafaro, D-Hubbard, and Joe Schiavoni, D-Austintown, and State Rep. Tim Ginter, R-Columbiana, are expected to join the state group.

“ The economic strength and success of the Mahoning Valley depends on engagement and collaboration between the Congressional delegation and local officials,” Brown said. “This working group has the potential to advance economic development, workforce training, and targeted efforts to build on the success of the Youngstown Air Reserve Station.”