State legislator addresses Hertford Rotary

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Cooperation between N.C., Virginia important for economy, says Steinburg

HERTFORD — The week after Easter is designated as spring break for our state legislators. However, few get the opportunity to simply relax. That is particularly true in the case of Rep. Bob Steinburg.

On Tuesday, April 7, he was the invited guest speaker for the Rotary Club in Hertford. Although he was asked to speak, the organization did not give Steinburg any guidelines on what he might talk about.

The meeting began bright and early (6:30 a.m.) at Capt Bob’s Restaurant, a frequent meeting place for organizations of all stripes. Upon arrival, Rep Steinburg greeted most every person in the room before being seated. In due course, he received his introduction.


Initially, he talked about the prospects for economic development in this area, which includes the business relationship between the states of North Carolina and our neighbor to the north, Virginia,

According to Steinburg, Gov. McCrory has conferred with Virginia Gov. McAuliffe. Both officials realize the obvious economic ties between our two states due to the availability of good paying jobs in the Hampton Roads area, our available workforce, and the relatively cheap land values compared to the cost of land on the Virginia side of the border.

Steinburg also mentioned the prospects for an auto manufacturer in this general section of the state, presumably around the Rocky Mount area. He maintains that tax incentives are a key element in attracting new businesses with the ancillary suppliers of a car manufacturer.

If a car manufacturer is planning to come to your state, said Steinburg, officials receive a they questionnaire, which includes a question of whether or not your state is prepared to offer tax incentives. If not, forget about future negotiations. So while Steinburg agrees that tax incentives are a problem, he understands these incentives are a necessary part of the equation when you’re trying to bring big business to your state.

Once the legislator concluded his remarks, he answered questions from the audience, which included the hot topic known as the “Religious Freedom Restoration Act.”

Steinburg offered his opinion that this is a constitutional issue being pushed by the liberal left. He used as an example of what we would do as a society, if gay people had a bed and breakfast and they had some skinheads wanting to rent their facility in order to bash gays. He believes that the advocates against religious freedom are more interested in running down our society and Constitution without regard to the rights of others. He believes, as most people do, that protection of rights applies to people of faith, as well as those of people with an agenda. But when the government takes sides in a politically charged environment, everybody loses.