Secretary of State
Secretary Grimes Promotes Business Development in Hardin and Surrounding Counties

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, September 09, 2015  
Contact Information:  Lynn Sowards Zellen
Director of Communications
Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes
(502) 330-9839

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes brought her “Kentucky Means Business” listening tour to Hardin County today, stressing the region’s partnership with Fort Knox and emphasizing the need to make the area even more business-friendly at a meeting with area business leaders.


Since Grimes took office in 2012, nearly 10,000 new businesses, including more than 2,000 in Hardin County, have opened in the Lincoln Trail and Barren River regions. Statewide, more than 100,000 new businesses have registered in that time frame.


“I am proud to be a voice in Frankfort speaking up for those who live and work in and around Hardin County, including the men and women serving at Fort Knox,” said Grimes, Kentucky’s chief business officer. “I have a record of cutting red tape and streamlining processes so businesses can spend less time interacting with government and more time creating jobs, and I’m excited to build on our strong foundation so we can achieve even greater growth and success for the region in the future.”


Grimes held the forum, the fifth in a series of ten stops in her “Kentucky Means Business” listening tour, to garner input about how state government can better serve the area’s economy. Participants discussed a variety of issues such as the growth and retention at Fort Knox, public-private partnerships and workforce development initiatives.


Attendees at the forum included Ft. Knox Garrison Commander Col. Stephen K. Aiton, Sen. Dennis Parrett, Lincoln Trail Area Development District Deputy Director Mike Burress, Hardin County Industrial Foundation President Rick Games, Elizabethtown Regional Airport Board Chairman Joe Yates, Hardin County Clerk Debbie Donnelly, Elizabethtown Mayor Edna Berger, Vine Grove Mayor Blake Profitt and Radcliff Mayor Mike Weaver.


“Fort Knox is a proud partner with the surrounding community and Commonwealth of Kentucky," said Aiton.  “As leaders, we all take very seriously serving those we represent, which makes it all the more special when we can work together for mutual benefit and the common good.  And when the area grows economically as a result, that helps Fort Knox as well because it provides a better quality of life for all those who live and work on post.”


Wendell Lawrence, LTADD Executive Director, said, “With our central location, excellent labor force, and strong partnership with Fort Knox, our region is a great place for existing and new businesses. I thank Secretary Grimes for highlighting our area and working to ensure our future success.”


The forum was held at IPAK Packaging Solutions, a Kentucky corporation that makes custom foam plastic rubber and also offers assembly and fulfillment services. IPAK has been operating in Radcliff for 15 years and has grown to 30 full-time employees. It currently has 40,000 square feet of production floor space, with room to expand.


“Small businesses are the backbone of Kentucky’s economy,” said Grimes. “IPAK is a great example of the many Kentucky businesses that offer top-notch, state-of-the-art services and help our communities and state thrive.”


Since taking office in 2012, Grimes has helped to grow Kentucky’s economy and give the green light to small businesses. For example, in addition to expanding and improving the Business One Stop Portal, Grimes has supported legislation that creates online crowdfunding opportunities in Kentucky and approves new generation cooperative associations to encourage development in the agriculture and energy industries.


During her first term as Secretary of State, Grimes has successfully sought more than ten bipartisan pieces of legislation – more than any other constitutional officer during the same time frame – to make Kentucky more business friendly and safeguard access to the ballot box.


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