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Nevada: A state open for all businesses

Brian Sandoval, Nevada Governor
Monday, 8 Jul 2013 | 10:17 AM ET
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval
Source: Brian Sandoval | Wikipedia
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval

The state of Nevada was founded on the tenacious spirit of entrepreneurs. From the hardscrabble life of the early prospectors and miners to the innovative start-ups that launch across Nevada today, the entrepreneurial spirit that travels through Nevada's veins is unmatched.

We are "battle born" and in our great state, if you can dream it, and work hard for it, success is just around the corner. In Nevada, there is no corporate or personal income tax, no inventory tax, no franchise tax, no unitary tax and no special intangible tax.

Businesses large and small thrive in Nevada because of the commitments we make to foster a business-friendly environment: economic development programs, public and private partnerships to grow innovation, a low tax burden and access to millions of customers worldwide within a day's travel.

All of these things work in conjunction to make Nevada one of the top states for business in the country.

It is no secret that our country has been gripped by economic turmoil for the last several years, and few states have felt this recession more than Nevada. When I came to office, it was clear that we needed to refocus our efforts to diversify Nevada's economy and renew the promise of opportunity that has carried our state through the difficult times of the past.

We created the Governor's Office of Economic Development (GOED) in 2011 and assigned a new level of commitment to growing business and creating jobs in Nevada.

From the beginning, we coordinated economic development efforts from a local, regional and state level to align with our vision of creating a vibrant, innovative and sustainable economy. We devoted staff, funding and time to support our new efforts.

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Nevada maintains resources to help existing Nevada companies expand and bring new companies to our great state. Last year, we recruited almost 90 companies, including Apple, and in the first nine months of fiscal year 2013, we have recruited 66 companies.

Our newest and most visible incentive program, however, is the Catalyst Fund, a fund with the sole purpose of accelerating job creation in Nevada by bringing high-value companies and high-value jobs to our state. Some of the funds were awarded for the first time earlier this year to industry-leading companies such as Take-Two Interactive Software and Solar City.

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While this is a start, we knew we had to do more. So we partnered with private industry and higher education to not only spur innovation in Nevada, but also create the work force of Nevada's future. Education and work force development play a critical role in making Nevada a business-friendly state, and we are committed to ensuring that our students keep pace with the jobs of the 21st century.

As a result of the recent legislative session, the Knowledge Fund was established to spur research, innovation and commercialization in the state and will be a key component for advancing innovation-based economic development.

Additionally, the state of Nevada recently partnered with IBM to create the Nevada Center of Excellence (COE), a public/private joint venture to promote innovation-based economic development in our state. Combining domain expertise from our institutions of higher education and IBM's advanced computing technologies, COEs throughout Nevada will deliver high-value shared services to public and private sector clients.

COEs will also help build job skills and assist the state's Department of Employment Training and Rehabilitation to grow the work force for tomorrow, the work force that will support the thriving start-ups across our state.

The spirit of Nevada has attracted incredible leaders of industry, like Howard Hughes and Bill Harrah who led Nevada through some of its earliest successes to Tony Hsieh of Zappos, which now calls Nevada home; Rob Roy of Switch, one of the world's most reliable technology ecosystems, and Warren Buffet, who now is helping lead Nevada into a new chapter of energy innovation. Nevada is on the move.

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In fact, according to the Kauffman Foundation, Nevada's entrepreneurial spirit has made the state a "Top 10" entrepreneurship state.

Nevada is also No. 3 in the nation for business tax climate according to the Tax Foundation, No. 1 for new business launches according to Kauffman and No. 2 for small-business survival, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Nevada is a place where business thrives. And while our state has the economic development resources to help businesses open and expand, Nevada's location is also key to business success.

Nevada is within a day's drive to 60 million customers and the U.S. ports that serve as a gateway to the Pacific Rim and Asia. Las Vegas' McCarran International Airport is the seventh-busiest airport in the country, with direct domestic and international flights daily. Nevada is the world's fifth-largest producer of gold and a world leader in renewable energy.

Because of our climate, our state is the world's center for the intellectual capital driving developments in unmanned aerial systems and we have the land space necessary to facilitate the testing of these applications. We are leading the nation in export intensity and export growth, and I am confident we will continue to do so.

Nevada was built on the entrepreneurship of the mining towns and the gaming industry, but Nevada is a state where all businesses can and do succeed. Simply put, no matter the path a business chooses, Nevada is the place that will help foster success.

I invite you to discover more at DiversifyNevada.com and encourage any businesses or entrepreneurs out there to take a look at the Great State of Nevada. You will be glad you did. All Nevada!

—By Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval.

Read more blogs from U.S. governors here.

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