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Lindley Estes is a business writer for The Free Lance-Star and This blog is on Fredericksburg-area business. Send an e-mail to Lindley Estes.

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Chmura: Shutdown, sequestration have slowed local economy

The federal government’s temporary shutdown and budget cuts have slowed the Fredericksburg-area economy of late, but the region is poised for growth going forward.

Those were among the comments well-known Virginia economist Christine Chmura made Tuesday at the Fredericksburg Regional Alliance’s annual meeting at the Jepson Alumni Executive Center.

Chmura said the Fredericksburg region came out of the recession well but has lagged in employment growth of late, a trend attributed to federal spending cuts.

Chmura pointed out that the region’s population growth over the next decade is expected to be more than triple that of the U.S. as a whole, a trend that should boost the local economy longer-term.

She also said the economic sectors where the Fredericksburg region is strong — including business services, finance, insurance, real estate, manufacturing, public administration, health and life services, and information/communications — are expected to see job growth ahead.

Also at the meeting, it was announced that Amanda Talbert, Nate Wood and Charlie Payne are joining the FRA’s board.

FRA President Gene Bailey also recognized Mary Washington Healthcare for topping the $1 million mark in financial support of the FRA over the organization’s 14-year history.