With the rewrite of Senate Bill 127, the new title Economic Development Modifications now focuses on developing 8 “Prosperity Zones” and would dissolve North Carolina’s seven regional economic development groups. The bill would develop a non-profit corporation to provide oversight of these zones and other functional services that the current Commerce Dept. performs. All groups affected—Community Colleges, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Natural Resources, and the Department of Commerce—will be required to maintain one employee in each of the newly named “Prosperity Zone” offices that will be located within each of the seven zones.
Governor Pat McCrory supports this bill and is pushing law makers to allow the Commerce department to be revamped in order to get better results. According to the Governor, “We can continue to do it the same way. Or we can change it and get better results. Right now it’s a competitive world for jobs. We have to do it better.”