By Darrell Todd Maurina: CNJ staff writer
Two Clovis residents participated in a national conference call with the White House on Thursday regarding improvements in the state and national economy.
“All over the United States, different people were on the conference call about how the economy is turning around,” said state Rep. Anna Crook. “There were governors, there were legislators. I asked if they cared if I included the chamber director and they said ‘yes (it would be OK).’”
Ernie Kos, executive director of the Clovis/Curry County Chamber of Commerce, couldn’t be reached for comment on her reaction to the call. However, Crook said it was helpful to learn directly from Ruben Barrales, deputy assistant to the president and director of intergovernmental affairs, how the state and national economy is doing.
“It was organized by the National Economic Development Group in Washington,” Crook said. “(They talked) about consumer confidence being at its highest level in three months.”
Other statistics released during the conference call, according to documents provided by Crook, showed that 288,000 jobs have been created nationally and 1.1 million since August 2003. Local tax data released by the federal government shows that 620,000 New Mexico taxpayers will see their taxes decline; 1 million married couples will benefit from a reduced marriage penalty; and 1.6 million couples and single parents will see an increase in their child tax credit.
“What they were doing on Thursday is each person was encouraged to go to their local media and inform them of the local economic numbers,” Crook said. “I think I was included probably because we are trying to get economic development in our area.”