Indiana site helps business owners

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Indiana's Commerce Department has created a World Wide Web site to attract and retain business, enabling business owners to specify their needs and search the state for a suitable location.

Business owners also can compare locations in Indiana to other places in the nation on topics such as tax rates, worker training and utility costs.

"This site just gets them good information quickly and it's hassle free," said Lieutenant Governor Joe Kernan, who also serves as the Commerce Department director. "We think that sends a strong message that this is a good place to do business."

The site helps attract business by making contact with state and local agencies easier, but Kernan said that helping customers and saving them time also was a large concern.

After logging onto the site, www.indianaINsites.com, a company or consultant fills out a short form to register a project. The form asks for information such as site, project and industry type, ceiling height, square footage, highway visibility, the number of jobs and wages offered.

After receiving a project number, business owners would use the site just as they would an e-mail account, communicating with utility companies, city officials, economic development organizations and officials at the state Commerce Department. All 92 counties in the state are connected to the system.

Shamrock Net Design, South Bend, Ind., designed the site for about $40,000.

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