SSTI Digest

The latest reporting and analysis on breakthroughs in technology-based economic development research and issues that matter most to you. To receive the SSTI Weekly Digest via email, sign up here.


Geography: Tennessee

Legislative sessions ending; AL, FL, NV, TN budgets reviewed

June 15, 2017

As more state legislatures are coming to the close of their sessions, more state budgets are being finalized. This week SSTI takes a look at the final appropriations for Alabama, which is decreasing its innovation funding in higher ed; Florida, whose governor signed a budget after vetoing more than $20 million in STEM, higher ed, R&D and other innovation funding; Nevada, with positive news in technology-based economic development funding; and Tennessee, where the Department of Economic and Community Development’s state funding is down by more than 27 percent compared to FY 2017.

Tennessee reconnects with adult students, aims to boost workforce

May 17, 2017

Adults in Tennessee seeking to return to the classroom will have a new option for free tuition at community colleges, part of an expansion of the Tennessee Promise scholarship program. The newly passed and expanded Tennessee Reconnect legislation extends eligibility for free tuition to persons who have been out of school for longer periods of time or who may have never attended college. It is part of Gov. Bill Haslam’s “Drive to 55” focus, where he hopes to increase the percentage of the state’s adults equipped with a college degree or certificate to 55 percent; it is currently closer to 30 percent in Tennessee.

OH, TN, TX, state budgets focus on innovation, R&D, education

February 02, 2017

SSTI continues to review state budget proposals as they are released, combing through them for TBED-related initiatives. This week, education and research and development programs are revealed as we examine the budget proposals from governors in Ohio, Tennessee and Texas.

Delta Regional Authority Releases Economic Development Strategy for 252 Counties Across Eight States

June 02, 2016

The Delta Regional Authority  (DRA) released the Regional Development Plan III (RDPIII) – an economic development strategy to help guide DRA’s 252-county region’s economic growth over the next five years. In RDPIII, DRA identifies three goals and related action items to guide its economic development efforts in the Delta region:

Early Stage Capital Measures Pass in KS, TN, and WV, In Limbo for AZ and ND

May 11, 2016

A mixture of success and trepidation accompanied 2016 legislation introduced in  several states to create, extend, or recapitalize angel tax credit programs. While legislation in Arizona’s legislature failed due to a lack of support, angel tax credit bills in Kansas and Tennessee passed easily with broad support from their governors, lawmakers, and the public. In North Dakota, the state’s angel tax credit program faces an unclear future due to concerns about transparency and oversight. To stimulate investments in West Virginia’s startup community, Gov.

New Developments in Capital: Strong Results Announced, New Funds Created

April 21, 2016

In the last month, major new developments have occurred in TBED capital programs. Launch Tennessee and Pittsburgh-based Innovation Works both announced positive findings about the growth of their startup investment ecosystems with $1 billion being raised by Tennessee startups from 2012 to early 2016 and over $279 million invested in Pittsburgh startups in 2015. Meanwhile in Ohio, both Youngstown-based and Cincy-based startups will see an influx of capital, while a new $150 million fund focused on stem cell companies and regions has been launched.

Govs Focus on Education in AL, LA, OK, PA, TN Budget Proposals

February 18, 2016

SSTI’s analysis of gubernatorial addresses, strategic plans and budget proposals continues this week with highlights from Alabama, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Tennessee. Governors are facing difficult fiscal situations in several of these states, often scaling back tech-based economic development efforts. Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, however, is using a fiscal surplus to invest in higher education and regionally focused economic initiatives.

Alabama

TN Commits $8M to Support Rural Economic Development

October 22, 2015

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam recently announced a new fund to support economic development in rural parts of the state. While most of the $8 million (approximately $7 million) is designated for shovel-ready economic development sites and tourism projects, the state will commit $600,000 for economic development grants to support entrepreneurship in small towns across the state including $300,000 to support a Main Street Business Incubator Program for downtown business districts.

Tennessee Announces Investment to Establish 100 Ag-Tech Businesses by 2020

September 03, 2015

Tennessee leaders hope to raise $10 million in public and private funding over the next five years to support an effort to attract 200 agricultural technology entrepreneurs and establish 100 ag-tech businesses by 2020. USDA Rural Development and the Tennessee Department of Agricultural recently announced they would seed that effort by contributing $220,000 to AgLaunch, a program to aid early-stage ag-tech companies. Memphis Bioworks Foundation will lead the initiatives, providing mentoring and programming opportunities for entrepreneurs. The program will begin in 2016.

Budget Update: NE, TN Budgets Fund New Efforts to Boost K-12 STEM

May 28, 2015

Over the past few months, SSTI has followed proposals issued by governors in their budget requests, State of the State Addresses, Inaugural Speeches and other events. Now that many state legislatures have begun approving budgets, the SSTI Digest will check on the status of these proposals, and examine the state of technology-based economic development funding in the states. This week, we review actions in Tennesse and Nebraska.

States Find New Ways to Expand Access to Higher Education

May 14, 2015

Forty-one states are spending less per student than before the 2008 recession, according to a recent study from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. As a result, more of the burden of higher education costs is being passed on to students, putting college out of reach for many. With state budgets still tight, many states are experimenting with new ways to make a college education accessible to all students.

Delta Regional Authority Forms 35-Member Public-Private Research, Innovation Consortium

May 06, 2015

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) announced the establishment of a consortium for research and innovation that is intended to have a long-term positive economic impact on the region. The 35-member consortium will be comprised of universities and other private and public institutions in eight states – Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee.

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