SOURCE: Detroit Regional Chamber

October 15, 2008 10:42 ET

Battleground States Unite Behind a Common Business Agenda

Great Lakes Region Bands Together to Promote Job Creation and Economic Growth

DETROIT, MI--(Marketwire - October 15, 2008) - The Great Lakes Region Coalition, a grassroots initiative promoting a federal legislative agenda for growing the Midwest region's economy, announced its aggressive business agenda for creating jobs and attracting investment for states in the Great Lakes area. The coalition includes over 30 chambers of commerce and 94,000 job providers.

The Great Lakes region, which is an important political battleground in the presidential election, makes up a significant portion of the U.S. economy. The coalition is working on the following business priorities:

--  Improving the Midwest's transportation infrastructure;
--  Creating a more open and secure border with Canada;
--  Adopting a comprehensive immigration policy;
--  Diversifying the region's economy by boosting innovation and
--  Harnessing the Great Lakes' economic potential.

"In the global economy, regions are competing for business and jobs. The Midwest states are working together to aggressively grow jobs and attract investment," said Richard E. Blouse Jr., president and CEO for the Detroit Regional Chamber.

"The Great Lakes region is about a third of the nation's overall economy and represents a third of the country's population. What is good for the Midwest is good for the United States," said Mark A. V'Soske, president for the Toledo Regional Chamber of Commerce.

"As the presidential candidates vigorously campaign for votes in these swing states, they need to hear from the employers creating jobs and growing businesses on how best to strengthen the region's economy," said Andrew J. Rudnick, president and CEO for the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.

"Midwestern states are leading exporters for the U.S. and improving the region's economic standing will strengthen the nation's role in the global economy," said Michael Langley, CEO for the Allegheny Conference on Community Development based in Pittsburgh.

To view the entire Great Lakes Region Coalition's report, visit

About the Detroit Regional Chamber

With more than 20,000 members, the Detroit Regional Chamber is the largest chamber of commerce in the country. The Chamber's mission is carried out through business attraction efforts, public policy advocacy, strategic partnerships and quality products and services for members.

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