Governor Nikki Haley talks to business and community leaders - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Governor Nikki Haley talks to business and community leaders

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley took the stage at the Hilton Head Island - Bluffton Chamber of Commerce's Annual State of the Region Breakfast on Hilton Head Island, talking about jobs and the economy.

"It's a great day in South Carolina," said Governor Haley as she addressed close to 700 community and business leaders in the Lowcountry.

The Governor says it is a great day because of all the successes throughout the state, from securing a sponsor for the Heritage Golf Tournament to recruiting new business, and bringing thousands of jobs to the state.

"Since January, we've announced 15,000 jobs in South Carolina," said Haley. "In our economy, that says a lot, but what's even better is we're not just focused on Charleston and Greenville. We're focused on the fact that we put 200 manufacturing jobs in Denmark, we put jobs in Dillion, we put jobs in Jasper, Marlboro. We put jobs in Pickins County, that's got one of the highest unemployment rates.

She says it's important to celebrate the successes throughout the state.

"We now have three of the four big tire manufactures and we can now brag that we build planes, we build cars, we build tires, everybody across the county is looking at South Carolina and seeing what we are doing. You know what we're doing, we're focusing on jobs and the economy," said Governor Haley. "We're focusing on commerce and tourism and that's what makes South Carolina great."

The Governor says the Palmetto State just recently got a big shot in the arm.

"Bridgestone, 2 weeks ago, announced the biggest incentive in South Carolina history, $1.2 billion, 850 jobs in the small town of Granetville," said Haley.

It is successes that many community and business leaders in the crowd were excited to hear.

"I am overwhelmed by her enthusiasm, our state needs more people that are so enthusiastic about our economy," said Helen Price. "We need more people enthusiastic about growing our businesses."

"If business in general is doing well, it's going to help our business," said Lee Edwards, President of The Greenery.

But the Governor says there's still a lot of work to be done.

"We have companies that need employees," said Haley. "We have people that need jobs but the missing link is the job training. You are going to see us get extremely aggressive on how we need to train people and get them back to work."

She says another priority is making the cost of doing business lower for small businesses. She wants to phase out the corporate income tax to help make the state competitive.

"Hearing about big business acquisitions is great but what is the real encouraging is hearing she and other delegates around the state are trying to lower corporate taxes for the entire state to help smaller businesses," said Edwards.

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