After coming into office, Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee directed the board of the R.I. Economic Development Corporation to modify the details of its Job Creation Guaranty Program so that no more 38 Studios LLC deals – a deal the governor opposed during his campaign for office – could be made.
As a result, there are now size limits on the loan guarantees.
At the time that the EDC board approved the changes, the agency said that a dozen companies were looking at the program, with the hopes that hundreds of jobs would be created once the proceeds from bonds were handed over to the applicants.
Nearly a year has passed since the modified program was approved and only two companies, with guarantees worth a total of $5.5 million (out of the original pool of $50 million) have been approved for the program.
Is it a good thing that the program seems to have stopped, or should the EDC redouble its efforts to get capital into the hands of companies willing to add jobs in Rhode Island?