Governor Inslee to expand economic program in Tri-Cities to rest - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Governor Inslee to expand economic program in Tri-Cities to rest of state

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RICHLAND, WA. -- Governor Jay Inslee says our local pilot economic gardening program is something we should be proud of and the state is getting ready to make economic gardening state wide to help grow business. 

Economic gardening is a national program that works with small businesses to give them access to experts and data that can help them improve their business. The Tri-City program was supported by $35,000 in donations from Battelle and Gesa Credit Union. 

5 very different local businesses participate in the program. They range a from plastic molding company to an IT firm. All of them say they've benefited tremendously from the 36 hours with the economic gardening experts and they've grown in ways they didn't even know they could. 

"It's so great to have this investment in small business," CEO of Elevate Paul Carlisle said. "And so for us, the ability to learn and gain knowledge that it's going to take to be competitive in our industry here locally and be competitive regionally in our industry."

"We have shown by using big data, when we make big data available to small businesses they can grow like crazy," Governor Jay Inslee said. "So we're excited about this. It started right here in the Tri-Cities. We've now passed a bill to make it state wide. Good things are going to happen from this."

Governor Inslee signed a bill into law last month that will create the economic gardening program statewide to help grow jobs in small businesses. And it's all because of the successful pilot program here in the Tri-Cities. 

Closer to home, the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce plans to expand our economic gardening program to five more companies in the near future.