§12-7-2. Legislative findings.
(a) The Legislature finds that the creation of a public body corporate to make investment funds available to eligible businesses would stimulate economic growth and provide or retain jobs within the state. Accordingly, it is declared to be the public policy of the state to create an investment program to inject needed capital into the business community, sustain or improve business profitability and provide jobs to the citizens of the state.
(b) The Legislature further finds that:
(1) The availability of financial assistance through the creation of the jobs investment trust will promote economic development in the state and will serve the public purposes of the state;
(2) The public policy of the state will be served through financing projects, extending loans, providing financing or credit for working capital, creating innovative investment plans and options, and providing equity financing or the refinancing of existing debt of an enterprise;
(3) It is in the public interest, in order to address the needs of the business community and the citizens of the state, that a public body corporate be created with full power to accept grants, gifts and appropriations; to generate revenues to furnish money and credit to approved businesses or enterprises; to promote the establishment of new and innovative projects; and to upgrade, expand and retain existing projects; and
(4) Fundamental changes are occurring in national and international markets that increase the need for debt financing, equity capital and near-equity capital for emerging, expanding and restructuring business opportunities in the state.
(c) The Legislature further finds:
(1) That due to the creation of the jobs investment trust, moneys will be available for venture capital in this state;
(2) That the implementation of this innovative program may supplant the need for the state to otherwise assist private venture capital concerns through other tax credits;
(3) That due to the availability of venture capital funds through this program the granting of venture capital company credits under the capital company act should be reduced for three fiscal years pending the full implementation of the jobs investment trust program;
(4) That due to this reduction in the certification of tax credits, additional general revenue may become available for new economic development programs;
(5) These economic development programs may be funded from general revenue in an amount appropriate to effectuate the purposes of these programs; and
(6) Due to the foregoing findings there shall be an annual line item appropriation, in an amount determined by the Legislature, to the West Virginia development office for a matching grant program for regional economic development corporations or authorities.