Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Can Idaho compete?


--Infrastructure needed for gun makers


tory published at magicvalley.com on Monday, February 11, 2008
By Joshua Palmer, Times-News writer

Idaho may have won the hearts of gun manufacturers, but it still needs to win their minds.

During a two-day visit earlier this week to the Shot Show in Las Vegas - the world's largest gun show - state and regional economic development officials met with gun makers to learn more about the industry, and to convince them that Idaho is a good place to do business.

What they learned was that Idaho may be gun friendly, but that it takes more than good will to create a manufacturing base.

Idaho in recent months has launched on an economic development strategy that plays on the state's pro-firearms legal and tax structure.

Why the new emphasis on attracting gun makers? The $2 billion-a-year industry has grown steadily since 1986.

"This is a stable industry that would benefit our larger communities like Twin (Falls) and Burley," said Jan Rogers, director of the Southern Idaho Economic Development Organization. "But what really makes it appealing is that some of these smaller companies would fit well in our rural communities."

So how about that, I bet that ruffles some feathers next door.


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