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Bolling Touts Business Resumé

Bill Bolling and Bill Cleaveland
Bill Bolling and Bill Cleaveland

Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling cruised through Roanoke on Tuesday as part of his Jobs for Virginians Tour, pushing an economic game plan he and running mate Bob McDonnell are promoting as partners on the GOP gubernatorial ticket. Bolling stopped at ADMMicro, the energy management and controls company that has grown from a startup to more than 50 employees in its five years of existence.

Now housed at the former Johnson & Johnson building, company executives welcomed Bolling and other local political dignitaries for a tour and then a discussion on how to improve the business climate in Virginia.  ADMMicro is the type of business Bolling might like to tout as a “green” company, one that might be eligible for job growth tax incentives under a McDonnell/Bolling administration.

Bill Cleaveland, 17th House District Republican candidate,  joined Bolling for a quick tour, as did State Senator Ralph Smith and Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce president Joyce Waugh.  “We are very unique in what we do,” said company CEO/president Don Howell as he began the tour.

The Lieutenant Governor, aiming to be reelected for a second term, was impressed. ADMMicro works with major concerns such as Wal-Mart, Target and the United States Postal Service, supplying control systems and monitoring units (Howell estimated the cost at $3000-$4000 each) that can help save energy.  “You are truly a green-energy business,” said Bolling, who was told that the ADMMicro systems could save 18-20% of a company’s energy bill.

After the tour Bolling,  Cleaveland and others gathered in the company boardroom for a discussion of how state government can help businesses grow, or when it should stay out of the way.  Cleaveland, a lawyer by trade who is running against Democrat Gwen Mason, called ADMMicro “the epitome of entrepreneurship …in the valley.”

Waugh asked about more funding for transportation initiatives and “overburdened” community colleges that need help in offering more of the non-credit training courses businesses are often looking for to train workers.

Bolling talked about tax credits for small businesses that create jobs, programs that would foster all types of energy production in the Commonwealth, and about dire budget predictions for the next few years. In regard to energy and carbon emissions reduction, Bolling mentioned that he was “so opposed to things like cap and trade…[it’s] a regulatory albatross that will keep jobs.”

Growing the economy again by creating jobs is the best way said Bolling, and he would like to do what he can as part of a winning ticket with McDonnell, the former Attorney General. “We’ve got some ideas on how to do that,” said Bolling, who mentioned a green energy tax credit.

If reelected, with McDonnell gaining the governor’s seat, the Lieutenant Governor said he would officially be christened the “job creation officer,” in the new administration, if they best the Democratic ticket of Creigh Deeds and Jodi Wagner.

Sounding a familiar Republican theme, Bolling said private business can often supply the answers and economic drivers politicians cannot. “Sometimes government gets in the way…not all knowledge rests in Richmond.”

By Gene Marrano
[email protected]

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