21 NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Ohio Gov. John Kasich talks future of jobs an - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

21 NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Ohio Gov. John Kasich talks future of jobs and GM Lordstown

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COLUMBUS, Ohio -

As technology advances, so are the demands for people to have skills in a workforce that’s evolving at the same time.

Ohio Governor John Kasich says the jobs of tomorrow will incorporate new technologies. He says people of all ages need to have the proper training and skills to compete.

The competition to attract companies to the state often hinges on the number of skilled workers within the area a business can eventually employ. 

Tax incentives and location also play a significant role. Two selling points that were a part of Kasich’s pitch to companies overseas during his trip to Japan earlier this year.

Kasich says he met with the CEO of Honda and had a meeting with Foxconn representatives, a tech company that manufactures digital display screens used in building the iPhone, household devices and screens customers see while shopping at local indoor and outdoor malls.

“This is the company that everybody in the country is chasing,” Kasich said in an exclusive sit down interview which airs in three parts on Thursday and Friday night on 21 News 6 PM and on Sunday in the 9 am hour of WFMJ Weekend Today.

Kasich doesn’t know if his meeting with Foxconn will produce any results, but that’s not stopping him from trying to reach out.

“We don’t want to give away the store,” Kasich said. “You have economic incentives you want to give them, but you don’t want to bankrupt yourself in the process. It’s not worth it.”

Meanwhile, Wisconsin state leaders, including Governor Scott Walker, want to offer Foxconn a $3 billion incentive package for the company to move to their state. CNBC reports the state wouldn’t break even on the proposed offer.

Amazon’s new fulfillment center in Etna Township is the latest tech company to move to Ohio bringing jobs with it. The online retail giant held a job fair August 2 where the company planned to hire 1,400 workers at its two Ohio locations, some would even be offered jobs on the spot.

While Kasich credits his administration for creating 500,000 jobs in Ohio since taking office, he says his work to diversify the state’s economy isn’t done yet.

Kasich says the state of Ohio remains strong in the manufacturing sector, but the state can’t rely on just one industry.

“We are beginning to look at all the different industries we have in our state. What are the ones likely to be impacted in the future with technology, what jobs will be lost and what jobs will be gained,” he said.

Reviving the manufacturing, coal and steel industries were among the promises President Donald Trump made during the 2016 election.

In recent weeks President Trump has held rallies, including one last month in Youngstown, where he vowed to do just that.

When asked if he believes Trump can keep those promises in Ohio, Kasich said it depends.  “I don’t think we’re going to see an opening of giant numbers of steel industries, I just don’t see it,” he said.

“Will we see stronger manufacturing, yeah that’s possible, but the idea that we’re going to be what we were 40 years ago tomorrow is unlikely,” Kasich said.

With layoffs still in place and uncertainties looming about the future of GM Lordstown, Kasich says he’s in contact with General Motors officials.

“I think GM’s spending a lot of time trying to figure out what direction they should move, because they know the future is going to be much different than it is today,” Kasich said.

Kasich believes GM CEO Mary Barra is strong leader who will set a new course for the automaker’s next product lines. Auto analysts have predicted that GM is likely considering what type of vehicles to build moving forward from autonomous vehicles to electric cars.
 

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