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Let's Look to the Future...........

November 10th, 2011

"Yesterday I had the opportunity to listen to major economists discuss the short and long term forecasts of the national and state economies at a presentation by West Virginia University College of Business and Economics.    While there are some bright spots on the horizon, with slow to moderate growth predicted.  It's clear that efforts to diversify West Virginia's economy over the years have largely been unsuccessful.   We are more dependent than ever on the mineral industries and the severance taxes that they provide.  Virtually all of the growth in West Virginia, both in jobs and revenue, can be attributed to the highly volatile mineral industries.

I am a strong supporter of the coal and natural gas industries and urge our leaders to look beyond the extraction industries and to explore the opportunities that are available in the next tier development.  Whether this be the "crackers" or enhancing the chemical industries that once were so prominent in the state.  We have the very real opportunity to transform the economy of the State not just for the next five years but for the next generation.  The experts tell us that in order to attract business to West Virginia we need structural changes in how our government works.  Our court systems and tax structures need reform.  Word is new regulations will be completed soon for the gas industry which will provide much needed guidance for industry.

Let's look to the future and transform our economy to one that is strong and diverse.  It is our goal at Alpha to help West Virginia's economy by being a strong business that continues to grow and pay taxes and provide many good paying jobs for the citizens of West Virginia.  Like most opportunities, if we miss it, it will be gone!"

Richard Colebank

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Morgantown, WV 26501-5934
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