Healthcare Reform Helps Entrepreneurs
While small business owners are key to building the local economy here in the mountains, not being able to afford health insurance is a huge challenge faced by many. The Affordable Care Act – some call it “Obamacare”- will offer tax credits for businesses with less than 25 employees to help with the cost of providing health coverage. WMMT talks with Jason Bailey of the Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED) on how this could encourage new entrepreneurs to start businesses, and increase job mobility – all good for the economy in eastern Kentucky. Increasing the number of insured Kentuckians through Medicaid Expansion and a health insurance exchange will also open up new business opportunities and jobs in healthcare.
For more details check out Implementing Health Reform Will Promote Entrepreneurship in KY
Todd Howard-Transition Starts With Me & With YouTodd Howard used to work in the coal industry. He now farms and helps run the Floyd County, KY Farmers Market. Todd spoke at the Appalachia’s Bright Future conference and his message was that transition to a more diverse economy isn’t going to come from outside — “It needs to start in my community of Hippo, in Lynch, in all our small communities.”
Brendan Smith – Lessons from NewfoundlandFishermen in the Northeast have been making a transition from work as cod fisherman — an industry that has been part of the region’s heritage for generations. Brendan Smith shared valuable lessons on what has been a sometimes difficult transition for these folks at the Appalachia’s Bright Future Conference.
Appalachian Carbon Partnership – Forests For The Future
Central Appalachia loses more than 130 acres of forestland everyday, as economic pressures force families to clear their land. Nearly 90 percent of forestland is privately owned and less than 5 percent of that land is under sustainable management. An innovative pilot program called the Appalachian Carbon Partnership is working to reverse this trend. A project of the Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED), in partnership with Appalachian Sustainable Development and Rural Action, ACP supports the practice of good forest management by selling carbon offsets that compensate landowners for the carbon sequestered in their trees each year. WMMT visited the Stickney Family in Estill County, KY, where they are sustainably managing their woodlands, and talked with various folks who support land and landowners by buying Appalachian Forest Offsets.