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Team Coverage | Jody Wagner visits Downtown Waynesboro

Democratic Party lieutenant-governor nominee Jody Wagner toured Downtown Waynesboro on Thursday with 25th House District Democratic Party nominee Greg Marrow. Our Team Coverage includes video from Wagner’s walking tour and her remarks to supporters at a downtown bakery, a photo essay by AFP publisher Crystal Graham and a column by AFP editor Chris Graham.


Video: The Wagner Walking Tour



Crystal Graham: The tour in pictures

Jody Wagner talks with Scott Gregory of the South River Science Team.

Jody Wagner, Greg Marrow and AFP editor Chris Graham

Jody Wagner addresses supporters at Short and Sweet Bakery.


Chris Graham: It’s the economy

A fresh set of eyes. That’s what Jody Wagner brought to Downtown Waynesboro Thursday morning.

“Maybe we’ve seen the worst, and things are picking back up,” said Wagner, the Democratic Party lieutenant-governor nominee, after a walking tour of downtown that included visits with three new business owners, all women.

“Three new businesses in this economy. That has to be a good sign,” said Wagner, a small-businesswoman herself and former state treasurer and Secretary of Finance who talked up the owners at Natural Beauty Studios, River City Art and Wine Emporium and Short and Sweet Bakery among others on her tour with 25th District Democratic Party nominee Greg Marrow.

Wagner and Marrow talked up their economics plans with supporters at the bakery after the tour. Marrow used the downtown backdrop to detail a legislative effort to provide incentives to business and industry to rehab and readapt existing buildings for reuse in places like Downtown Waynesboro. “I figure if we can give tax breaks to companies like Wal-Mart to come in and employ people at submarket salaries, we can certainly do that for small business,” Marrow said.

Wagner said the state needs to boost its “tools in the toolbox,” most importantly the Governor’s Opportunity Fund that is a tool for the governor to be able to offer economic incentives to business and industry looking to expand or locate in Virginia. “It’s interesting that last week Bill Bolling was traveling around the state, and he was talking about the fact that the Governor’s Opportunity Fund has to be greater. Well, he’s been part of the crowd that’s been cutting the Governor’s Opportunity Fund. And cutting the Virginia Economic Development (Partnership)’s funding,” Wagner said, referring to her Republican opponent, the sitting lieutenant governor, Bill Bolling, and his sudden interest in increasing the state’s commitment to the Opportunity Fund now that he is up for re-election.

“It’s interesting that Bill Bolling has been lieutenant governor for almost four years, and it took up until three months before the election for him to take notice of the fact that we had a shortage in the Governor’s Opportunity Fund,” Wagner said.

“I have spent the last seven years working with Mark Warner and Tim Kaine to create jobs. We’ve created almost 200,000 well-paying jobs that come with benefits that put people to work all over the Commonwealth. But we’ve got to do more,” Wagner said.

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